Ants Of Daley Ranch 7

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San Diego County Ants:
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Daley Ranch Ants:  
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  Part 3  
  Part 4  
  Part 5  
  Part 6  
  Part 7  
  Part 8  
  Part 9  
Ants Of Daley Ranch, San Diego County Part 7 (of 9)

Wingless Wasps That Resemble Ants

Small Wingless Wasps In The Family Myrmosidae

Nocturnal Wingless Wasp In The Family Chyphotidae

This minute wasp belongs to the genus Chyphotes. It was collected at night under coast live oaks in a pitfall trap. It is apparently not that commonly seen by entomologists.

Another colorful wingless wasp discovered in the leaf litter beneath a coast live oak. It superficially resembles an ant in size and shape. Unlike ants, it does not have an elbowed antenna or constricted petiole between the thorax and gaster. There are other less obvious morphological differences. This species was only 5 mm long, much smaller than typical velvet ants of the family Mutillidae.

Wingless wasp the size of an ant. Found under coast live oak along Ranch House Road.

Velvet Ants In The Family Mutillidae

Two species of "velvet ants" (Dasymutilla sp.). Red and white velvet ants are occasionally seen in the dry foothills of San Diego County. This attractive, furry insect is actually a wingless female wasp. She scurries around on the ground presumably searching for prey. This insect can inflict a painful sting that reportedly subsides quickly. According to entomologist Christopher Starr, it is on the same pain level as the paper wasp, although many authors refer to it as the "cow killer." See pain level of paper wasp on following Schmidt Sting Pain Index. Compare paper wasp (3.0) with the infamous bullet ant (4.0+):

Schmidt Sting Pain Index

Sting Rating
Comparison Analogy
Sweat Bee
Like a tiny spark has has singed a hair on your arm.
Fire Ant
Like walking on a carpet & getting a static electricity shock.
Bullhorn Acacia Ant
Like someone fired a staple into your cheek or hand.
Bald-Faced Hornet
Like getting your hand mashed in a revolving door.
Like extinguishing a cigar on your tongue.
Honey Bee
Like a burning matchhead that lands on your skin.
Red Harvester Ant
Like using a drill to excavate your ingrown toenail.
Paper Wasp
Like spilling a beaker of hydrochloric acid on a paper cut.
Pepsis Wasp
Like dropping a running hair drier into your bubble bath.
Bullet Ant
Walking on hot charcoals with 3 inch rusty nail in your heel.

The Sting Of The Velvet Ant Is Painful, But Not Even Close To The Excruciating Pain Of The South American Bullet Ant.

Man Testing Sateré-Mawé Tribal Initiation With Bullet Ants In Amazon
  The Sateré-Mawé Tribal Initiation Using Bullet Ants In Brazilian Amazon  

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