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Spider Wasp

Generic common name for wasps that belongs to the family Pompilidae, a genus which contains some 5,000 species, that are divided in several subfamilies (fig.). As the common name suggests, most members of this family hunt, capture and paralyze spiders, often by dismembering them (fig.), which they then drag to their nest, usually a self-constructed burrow in the sand. The female will then lay a single egg on the abdomen of the spider, and the burrow is closed off, burying the spider alive and leaving it as living food for the wasp's larva. To ease access into burrows, spider wasps typically have a slender body and long, spiny legs. In Thai, spider wasps are known as toh maengmoom (ต่อแมงมุม). Occasionally, also called Spider-hunting Wasp. See also Ichneumon Wasp (fig.), Thread-waisted Wasp (fig.), and Mud Dauber (fig.).