With iridescent blue wings and a black body, Black Flower wasps are native insects that are great to have about in the garden. The adults enjoy feasting on nectar and help pollinate native plants, while the larvae prey on curl grubs which live under the ground and eat the roots of plants.
You generally only spot one of these beautiful wasps at a time, as they’re solitary creatures and don’t build communal nests like paper wasps. But in the summer months a number can cluster together in an area that takes their fancy. This summer we’ve had an explosion of black flower wasps on our nature strip, which is planted with lots of native grasses and has a wood chip path. At times there has been about two dozen wasps zipping up and down the nature strip! We love watching them, but need to reassure family and friends that they’re really passive and not at all aggressive or likely to sting you! Sometimes you see the female wasps crawling into the mulch to lay their eggs.
Our native insects truly are fascinating, yet we often know so little about them. We find the CSIRO website has some interesting info about native insects, as does the website Brisbane insects which is run by a nature-loving family of insect enthusiasts!