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Square-headed wasps of the Afrotropical region

(Life: Kingdom: Metazoa (animals); Phylum: Arthropoda; Class: Hexapoda; Order: Hymenoptera; Superfamily: Apoidea)


Dinetus pictus side Dinetinae




Solitary predatory wasps, provisioning nest with paralyzed prey for consumption by the larvae.


Antropov, A.V. 1999. A new genus of digger wasps of the tribe Oxybelini (Hymenoptera, Sphecidae), Crabroninae) from South Africa. Zoologicheskiy Zhurnal. 78(9):1132-1136. [In Russian. English translation: Entomological Review. 1999. 79(8):1055-1059.]

Antropov, A.V. 2007. On the Taxonomy of South African Digger Wasps of the Tribe Oxybelini (Hymenoptera, Crabronidae). Entmological Review 87: 413-430. https://doi.org/10.1134/S0013873807040045

Arnold, G. 1920. A revision of the South African species of the genus Sphex Linn. (olim Ammophila Kirby). Proceedings of the Rhodesia Scientific Association 18 (2):25-55, 2 pls.

Arnold, G. 1922. The Sphegidae of South Africa. Part I. Annals of the Transvaal Museum 9:101-138.

Arnold, G. 1923a. The Sphegidae of South Africa. Part II. Annals of the Transvaal Museum 9:143-190, pl. V.

Arnold, G.  1923b. The Sphegidae of South Africa. Part III. Annals of the Transvaal Museum 9:191-253.

Arnold, G.  1923c. The Sphegidae of South Africa. Part IV. Annals of the Transvaal Museum 10:1-58.

Arnold, G.  1924.The Sphegidae of South Africa. Part V. Annals of the Transvaal Museum 11:1-73, pl. I-II.

Arnold, G.  1925. The Sphegidae of South Africa. Part VI. Annals of the Transvaal Museum 11:137-175.

Arnold, G.  1926. The Sphegidae of South Africa. Part VII. Annals of the Transvaal Museum 11:338-376.

Arnold, G.  1927. The Sphegidae of South Africa. Part VIII. Annals of the Transvaal Museum 12:55-131.

Arnold, G. 1928a. The Sphegidae of South Africa. Part IX. Annals of the Transvaal Museum 12:191-232, pl.VIII.

Arnold, G.  1928b. The Sphegidae of South Africa. Part X. Annals of the Transvaal Museum 12: 233-279, pls. IX-XI.

Arnold, G.  1928c. The Sphegidae of South Africa. Part XI. Annals of the Transvaal Museum 12:338-375.

Arnold, G. 1929a. The Sphegidae of South Africa. Part XII. Annals of the Transvaal Museum 13:217-319.

Arnold, G. 1929b. The Sphegidae of South Africa. Part XIII. Annals of the Transvaal Museum 13:320-380, pl. VI.

Arnold, G. 1929c. The Sphegidae of South Africa. Part XIV. Annals of the Transvaal Museum 13:381-418, pls. VII-VIII.

Arnold, G. 1930. A check-list of the Sphegidae of the Ethiopian Region. University Press, Cambridge, England. 21 pp.

Arnold, G. 1931. The Sphegidae of South Africa. Part XV (conclusion). Annals of the Transvaal Museum 14:135-220.

Arnold, G. 1932. New species of Ethiopian Sphegidae. Occasional Papers of the Rhodesian Museum 1:1-31.

Arnold, G. 1933. Entomological expedition to Abyssinia, 1926-7. Hymenoptera, II.: Sphegidae and Psammocharidae. With an introductory note and supplementary list by Hugh Scott, Sc. D. The Annals and Magazine of Natural History (Series 10) 11:351-371.

Arnold, G. 1935. Scientific results of the Vernay-Lang Kalahari expedition, March to September, 1930. Sphegidae and Psammocharidae. Annals of the Transvaal Museum 16: 497-505.

Arnold, G. 1942. Systematic notes on African species of Cerceris (Hymenoptera) and descriptions of new species. Journal of Entomological Society of Southern Africa 5:1-25, pls. I-II.

Arnold, G. 1945 (1944). The Sphecidae of Madagascar. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge. 193 pp.

Arnold, G. 1951. Sphecidae and Pompilidae (Hymenoptera) collected by Mr. K.M. Guichard in West Africa and Ethiopia. Bulletin of the British Museum (Natural History). Entomology 2:95-183.

Arnold, G. 1960. Aculeate Hymenoptera from the Drakensberg Mountains, Natal. Annals of the Natal Museum 15: 79-87.

Bequaert, J. 1933. The nesting habits of Paranysson, an African genus of fossorial wasps (Hymenoptera, Sphegoidea). Entomological News 44: 36-39.

Bohart, R.M. & Menke, A. S. 1976. Sphecid Wasps of the World: a Generic Revision. University of California Press, Berkeley, California.

Branstetter MG, Danforth BN, Pitts JP, Faircloth BC, Ward PS, Buffington ML, Gates MW, Kula RR, Brady SG. 2017. Phylogenomic insights into the evolution of stinging wasps and the origins of ants and bees. Current Biology 27: 1019-1025. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cub.2017.03.027

Brauns, H. 1899. Zur Kenntnis der südafrikanischen Hymenopteren. Ann. Naturhist. Hofmus, Wien, 13: 382-423.
Brauns, H. 1906. Zur Kenntnis der südafrikanischen Hymenopteren, II. Verh. zool.-bot. Ges. Wien, 56: 43-59.
Brauns, H. 1911. Die Nysson-Arten Südafrikas. Kaplande (Willomore).

Brothers D.J. 1999. Phylogeny and evolution of wasps, ants and bees (Hymenoptera, Chrysidoidea, Vespoidea and Apoidea) Zoologica Scripta 28: 233–250.

Dahlbom, G. 1845. Hymenoptera Europaea praecipue borealia; formis typicis nonnullis Specierum Generumve Exoticorum aut Extraneorum propter nexum systematicus associatis; per Familias, Genera, Species et Varietates disposita atque descripta. Tomus: Sphex in sensu Linneano. Pp. 353-528. Officina Lundbergiana, Lund. pp.

Finnamore, A.T. & Michener, C.D. 1993. Superfamily Apoidea (pp. 279-357). In GOULET, H. & HUBER, J. (eds). Hymenoptera of the World: an identification guide to families. Research Branch, Agriculture Canada, Ottawa, Canada, 668 pp.

Gadallah, NS. 2020. Biodiversity of the aculeate wasps (Hymenoptera: Aculeata) of the Arabian Peninsula: Apoidea (Spheciformes), Crabronidae. Zootaxa 4754(1): 20–73. https://doi.org/10.11646/zootaxa.4754.1.6

Gess, S.K. & Gess, F.W. 2014. Wasps and bees in southern Africa. SANBI Biodiversity Series 24. South African National Biodiversity Institute, Pretoria. 320 pp.

Pulawski, W.J. 1995. The wasp genus Gastrosericus Spinola, 1839 (Hymenoptera: Sphecidae). Memoirs of the California Academy of Sciences 18: 1-173. http://biodiversitylibrary.org/page/15652419

Pulawski, WJ. 2020. Family group names and classification.

Sann M, Niehuis O, Peters R, Mayer C, Kozlov A, Podsiadlowski L, Bank S, Meusemann K, Misof B, Bleidorn C, Ohl M. 2018. Phylogenomic analysis of Apoidea sheds new light on the sister group of bees. BMC Evolutionary Biology 18: 71. http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s12862-018-1155-8

Sharkey, M., 2007. Phylogeny and classification of Hymenoptera. Zootaxa 1668: 521–548.

Sharkey, M. J., Carpenter, J. M., Vilhelmsen, L., Heraty, J., Liljeblad, J., Dowling, A. P.G., Schulmeister, S., Murray, D., Deans, A. R., Ronquist, F., Krogmann, L. and Wheeler, W. C. 2012. Phylogenetic relationships among superfamilies of Hymenoptera. Cladistics 28: 80–112. doi: 10.1111/j.1096-0031.2011.00366.x


CATALOG OF WORLD SPHECIDAE sensu lato (= Apoidea excluding bees) compiled by
Wojciech J. Pulawski (California Academy of Sciences).


Photographs © Norman Larsen (Iziko Museums) or Vida van der Walt (Pretoria) or Joan Young.

Web author Simon van Noort (Iziko South African Museum)


Citation: van Noort, S. 2023. WaspWeb: Hymenoptera of the Afrotropical region. URL: www.waspweb.org (accessed on <day/month/year>).

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