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a subfamily of solitary wasps of the family Vespidae; it was earlier considered the separate family Masaridae.

Masarinae have been little studied. They are predominantly small forms, with a body length rarely greater than 1 cm. The abdomen is striped. The wasps feed on the nectar and pollen of flowering plants; in contrast to bees, they carry the pollen in their crop. The females build solitary nests with a single or, sometimes, several isolated cells. The nests, which are in the ground or on branches, usually are made from clay or a clay and sand mixture cemented with secretions from the salivary glands. The female deposits an egg in a cell of the nest, filling it with a mixture of pollen and nectar and then sealing it. The larva develops in the course of several months and then spins a dense cocoon inside the cell. The life cycle may last two years. There are about 100 species, distributed mainly in desert zones.

In the USSR, the wasps occur in the southern European portion, in Transcaucasia, and Middle Asia.


Zhizn zhivotnykh, vol. 3. Moscow, 1969.
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Biological notes on the pollen wasp, Paragia (Cygnaea) vespiforms (Hymenoptera: Vespidae: Masarinae) with description of a nest.
Nesting behavior and distribution of nests in the pollen wasp Trimeria howardi (Masarinae--Vespoidea).
The pollen wasps, like the long-tongued bees, therefore have the potential to obtain nectar from a wider range of flower forms than do short-tongued wasps and bees.
Female pollen wasps, like all non-parasitic bees, visit flower to collect pollen and nectar to provision their nests similarly to most nonmasarinae aculeate wasps and bees, both male and female masarine collect nectar for their own nourishment (Gess 1996).
The life cycle pollen wasps in general, appears to be univoltine.
It's scary outdoors where wasps roam aplenty and pollen wasps roam aplenty and pollen pa rticles threaten my airways.
Philip Torchio and his clever studies into the foraging mechanics of pollen wasps at Penstemon.