Fun Mud Dauber Wasp Facts For Kids

Akinwalere Olaleye
Nov 02, 2022 By Akinwalere Olaleye
Originally Published on Aug 05, 2021
Edited by Isobel Murphy
Fact-checked by Spandana Kantam
Mud daubers are known for building mud nests.
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Age: 3-18
Read time: 5.3 Min

Before we learn all the details about mud daubers, we need to know what a wasp is! A Wasp is any insect with a narrow-waist, wings, a sting, and black and yellow stripes across its body.

The scientific name of the black and yellow mud dauber wasp is Sceliphron caementarium. These wasps are native to California, USA. The mud dauber belongs to either the Sphecidae or Crabronidae families and they get their names, including 'potter wasp' and 'dirt digger', thanks to their habit of building their nests out of mud.

There are different mud dauber wasps, including the black and yellow mud daubers, organ pipe mud daubers, and metallic-blue mud dauber wasps. Here we will bring you some interesting facts about the mud dauber wasp. For more, read about the wasp and ground beetle here too!

Mud Dauber Wasp Interesting Facts

What type of animal is a mud dauber wasp?

The mud dauber wasp is different from other wasps. One of the main differences is their size and shape.

Mud dauber wasps are medium to large-sized, compared to the much smaller wasps. These species are a shiny dark blue or black in color, sometimes with a metallic appearance. In a mud dauber wasp's body, a long, slender segment exists between the thorax and abdomen with transparent wings.

What class of animal does a mud dauber wasp belong to?

Mud dauber wasps are insects that belong to the wasp families of Sphecidae or Crabronidae.

How many mud dauber wasps are there in the world?

The total number of these species in the world is unknown but we do know that there are close to 30 species in the same family.

Where does a mud dauber wasp live?

Mud daubers are independent wasps, and they need no companions to build their mud nest. They build their tube or pipe-shaped nest out of the mud in or around buildings, sheds, and ceilings.

What is a mud dauber wasp's habitat?

Mud dauber wasps, as the name suggests, are famous for building their nests out of mud. Female mud dauber wasps create individual nests by constructing small mud nest in or around buildings, sheds, and ceilings.

Mud dauber nests often look like an organ tubes, and the tubes are about 1 in (2.5 cm) long. The mud dauber nests build long, thin cylinders out of the mud.

Who do mud dauber wasps live with?

The black mud dauber wasp lives a solitary life. They are different from other flying pests that build colonies or mud nests in your home.

How long does a mud dauber wasp live?

In general, a mud dauber wasp's lifespan from the time the egg is laid is for one year.

How do they reproduce?

They reproduce sexually and a female mud dauber wasp lays only one egg in each nest cell. The nest contains several cells and a paralyzed spider in each cell.

They hunt and then paralyze spiders in the nest so that when the egg hatches, the larva can eat the spiders. Mud dauber wasp females lay approximately 15 eggs over their lifetime.

What is their conservation status?

Their conservation status is Least Concern.

Mud Dauber Wasp Fun Facts

What do mud dauber wasps look like?

Mud dauber wasps are medium to giant-sized insects. They are a shiny dark blue or black color and sometimes have a metallic appearance. They have a narrow abdomen and transparent wings. This insect has a sting loaded with venom ready to paralyze its prey.

The mud dauber wasp builds nests out of the mud

How cute are they?

Its color and appearance make the mud dauber wasp a relatively cute insect. They are harmless unless they are attacked or threatened by someone. In fact, the mud dauber wasp helps as a pest control agent for humans.

How do they communicate?

Mud daubers communicate using their antennae. The antennae are an essential part of their body, without which they cannot smell, hear, or detect the pheromones which a Queen uses to attract a mate.

How big is a mud dauber wasp?

Mud daubers are 0.5-1 in (1.3-2.5 cm) long.

How fast can a mud dauber wasp fly?

The mud dauber wasp only flies between May and September. They are not fast flyers.

How much does a mud dauber wasp weigh?

The weight of mud dauber wasps is unknown. However, we do know that they can collect heavier and larger mud balls than their body weight.

What are the male and female names of the species?

The males are simply called male wasps and the females are called female wasps. The female wasp's abdomen is larger than the male's because of its role in carrying the eggs.

What would you call a baby mud dauber wasp?

The mud dauber wasp lays only one egg at a time. A baby mud dauber wasp can be called an egg, larva, pupa, or an adult mud dauber, depending upon its life stage.

What do they eat?

Mud dauber insect wasps are omnivores. The mud dauber wasp mainly eats insects, spiders, and sometimes the nectar from flowers.

Are they dangerous?

Yellow and black mud dauber wasps are predators of spiders but are not hugely threatening to humans. They are generally not aggressive or dangerous but can become aggressive when attacked.

Would they make a good pet?

Whilst they cannot seriously harm humans, a sting from a mud dauber wasp can hurt, so no they are not suitable to be kept as pets. Despite this, one way the mud dauber wasp is useful to humans is as a pest control agent as they reduce the populations of other bugs and spiders.

For example, this species helps kill the cicada pests that destroy garden plants.

Did you know...

Do you know that the female wasp's sting is also its sex organ? The female insect is considered more dangerous than the male counterparts. Males are not involved in mud nest building or guarding. They are busy feeding on the nectar from flowers and waiting to mate.

The mud dauber wasp life cycle from egg to adult is one year long.

Mud dauber wasps have excellent eyesight and use landmarks to locate their mud nest.

The blue mud dauber does not build a nest but takes other mud daubers' nests.

What to do if you get stung by a mud dauber wasp?

These pests are not aggressive, but what do we do if these insects sting us? For an immediate blue mud dauber wasp sting treatment, wash the sting area, apply a cold pack, and some antiseptic cream.

How to get rid of mud dauber wasps?

Mud daubers are an excellent species and, until we threaten them, they do not attack us. However, the buzzing sound can sometimes be annoying, and a mud dauber wasp nest is a nuisance if built near human houses.

To get rid of the mud dauber wasp nest and mud dauber wasp larvae, we can spray the nest with wasp freeze, and use a paint scraper to scrape the nest away from the area.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! Learn more about some other insects including the water beetle, or the Atlas beetle.

You can even occupy yourself at home by drawing one on our mud dauber wasp coloring pages.

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Written by Akinwalere Olaleye

Bachelor of Arts specializing in English Literature

Akinwalere Olaleye picture

Akinwalere OlaleyeBachelor of Arts specializing in English Literature

As a highly motivated, detail-oriented, and energetic individual, Olaleye's expertise lies in administrative and management operations. With extensive knowledge as an Editor and Communications Analyst, Olaleye excels in editing, writing, and media relations. Her commitment to upholding professional ethics and driving organizational growth sets her apart. She has a bachelor's degree in English Literature from the University of Benin, Edo State. 

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Fact-checked by Spandana Kantam

Bachelor of Arts specializing in Political Science and Sociology

Spandana Kantam picture

Spandana KantamBachelor of Arts specializing in Political Science and Sociology

Spandana holds a Bachelor's degree in Political Science from Acharya Nagarjuna University. She has a passion for writing and enjoys reading crime and thriller novels while listening to RnB music in her free time.

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