Despite their large size (about 1.5 inches) and their appearance, these wasps are harmless. They don’t bite or sting. They can be found in all forested regions of Canada and the US. Females (shown here) use their ovipositor to bore holes into wood and lay their eggs. The developing larvae will feed on the wood. From larvae to adult, their entire lifespan can last three years.

Photo by: Dave Ensner on 8/25/21 at St. Mary Peak Lookout near Stevensville, MT