Center for Systematic Entomology, Gainesville, Florida


Date of this Version



Kurczewski FE, West RC, Pitts JP, Waichert C. 2022. First host record for the spider wasp Cryptocheilus severini Banks (Hymenoptera: Pompilidae: Pepsinae). Insecta Mundi 0935: 1–4.


Published on May 27, 2022 by Center for Systematic Entomology, Inc. P.O. Box 141874 Gainesville, FL 32614-1874 USA

Copyright held by the author(s). This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons, Attribution Non-Commercial License,


The first host record for the North American spider wasp Cryptocheilus severini Banks (Hymenoptera: Pompilidae: Pepsinae) from Mazatlán, Sinaloa, México is introduced with pertinent observation information. The genus Cryptocheilus Panzer in North America is briefly described, its nesting habitat and prey transport outlined, and host specificity detailed.

The genus Cryptocheilus Panzer (Hymenoptera: Pompilidae: Pepsinae) comprises medium to rather large species of average stoutness (Townes 1957). The six Nearctic species of Cryptocheilus are all closely related (Townes 1957). In the Old World this genus is much richer, with 24 species and structural diversity that can present problems in identification from other species complexes (Cambra and Wahis 2005). There are five species of Cryptocheilus occurring in the Neotropical region, from México to Colombia (Fernández et al. 2022). Females of Cryptocheilus species nest in the ground, typically in a burrow off the side of a large fissure in the soil or a mammal burrow. The wasp may excavate the nest-cell prior to prey capture and immobilization of the spider by stinging, as in the related genus Entypus Dahlbom. Prey are transported backwards on the ground, the spider being grasped with the wasp’s mandibles by a leg, pedipalp or chelicera. Host records for only four North American Cryptocheilus species are known and they comprise predominantly Lycosidae (wolf spiders) and, rarely, Agelenidae (funnel-web or grass spiders) (Table 1).