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I'm a student of biology and yesterday we went to the fields to collect some plants for our herbariums.

Suddenly one student of our group said that he saw a very strange bug that he thought that was related to the family of wasps/hornets.

He pointed to some dried bushes and that insect was hidden inside. I could not do a photo but I hope that you could help me identifying this bug since it surprised me a lot (and even scared me a bit).

From what I remember, this insect had an enormous abdomen (around 5-7cm long and 3-4 cm wide) that had a similar shape to the abdomen of wasps and hornets. The rest of its body and head were very small (around 1cm). It had no wings and I think it had no "hair". It was mostly black with very few red marks/stripes.

I've been "researching" a bit and the most similar insect I found on the web was the Dasymutilla occidentalis but the insect I found had no hair (or rather I believe so), had a much bigger abdomen and was way bigger than the average "Cow Killer". Also, this bug is native to the US and I live in southern Europe, so I think it's very unlikely that this insect lives here as well (I've found no information about Dasymutilla occidentalis living in my country)

The exact location was (in UTM): 30T 0462625 4447661 (East of Madrid, Spain)

I know this description may be vague, but it is all I've got and I'm very curious about that insect I found. It would be great if you could help me

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  • $\begingroup$ It will be difficult to id the insect based on your description. What surprises me is the relative wide abdomen, compared to the length and the size of it's head. To me a insect with such a wide abdomen would not look like a wasp. Can you explain why it reminded you of a wasp? $\endgroup$ – RHA Apr 28 at 18:59
  • $\begingroup$ @RHA As I said, one student of our group (who is very interested in zoology) said that this insect was probably related to wasps/hornets and also it had the "typical" "triangular" or "conical" shape that wasps abdomens have. Maybe the head was a little bigger (2-3cm) but the entire insect was around 7 cm $\endgroup$ – Sue K Dccia Apr 28 at 22:46

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