The ichneumon wasp preys on horntail larvae, and the female flies from tree to tree sniffing for the chemical signature of the fungus. Fortunately for humans, the stinger is really an egg-laying device (ovipositor) -- these parasitic wasps have no interest in large mammals like us. Adults emerge in the spring. Penetrating the hard bark and wood of a conifer is not easy, but the ovipositor (which has two sections called valves joined by a tongue and groove) uses a reciprocating motion to push its way in. Proudly created by Suite-Apps.com. When a female is ready to oviposit her eggs, she rotates segments 8 and 9 of her abdomen and unfolds her intersegmentary membranes so that they form a disc 2 cm in diameter. The ichneumon life cycle begins in the spring, when mature adults emerge and begin looking for mates. This large and colourful ichneuomon was found on a tree in Forest Crowne just outside the park boundary. There is some evidence that the tip of the probe secretes enzymes that soften the wood, and it appears that the wasp may also be able to change the direction of the tip as it "drills" to better locate the prey. 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Fire Interface Logging in Kimberley Nature Park, Keep an eye out for the North American pika, Now is the time to see balsamroot in bloom, 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