Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Black and Yellow Mud Dauber

Black and Yellow Mud Dauber (Sceliphron caementarium)

Common throughout North America. This female is building a nest on our porch.

BugGuide: "Nests may comprise up to 25 cylindrical cells, which are usually oriented vertically. Typically 6 to 15 prey spiders are placed in each cell, though up to 40 have been recorded. The female may provide the cells with a temporary closure consisting of a thin mud curtain to keep out parasites while she is collecting prey. Once the final prey is placed in the cell, she lays an egg on one of the last prey and seals the cell with a thick mud plug. She may then add more mud to cover the entire cluster of cells."

The species name means "mason, builder of walls" in Latin.