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Megalara garuda
Megalara garuda male.png
Male (large morph)
Megalara garuda female.png
Scientific classification
M. garuda
Binomial name
Megalara garuda
Kimsey & Ohl, 2012

Megalara garuda, colloquially referred to as the "king of wasps",[1] is a large wasp and the only species in the genus Megalara, family Crabronidae, tribe Larrini.[2] It is only known from the Mekongga Mountains in the southeastern part of the Indonesian island of Sulawesi. It was described in 2012 by Lynn Kimsey, director of the Bohart Museum of Entomology and professor of entomology at the University of California, Davis,[2] and Michael Ohl, curator and head of entomology at the Museum für Naturkunde, Berlin.[3] Rosichon Ubaidillah from the Indonesian Institute of Sciences also contributed the discovery.[4]

In March 2012, the full species description was published.[5] The species is named after Garuda,[2] the national symbol of Indonesia, a giant bird-like creature. This species had never been observed while alive or in flight, nor had any raw footage of one alive ever been seen.[6]

Males of one morph are about 3.3 cm (1.3 in) long, with very large jaws.[5] Their elongated mandibles are almost as long as their forelegs.[5] Males of another morph and all females have proportionally smaller jaws and are overall smaller at about 2–2.5 cm (0.8–1.0 in), but still larger than other species in the subfamily.[5] Both sexes are shiny black with black wings. It is a solitary predator of other insect species.

Very little is known about the sting of this insect.[2]


  1. ^ Mosher, Dave (28 March 2012). "Bizarre "King of Wasps" Found in Indonesia". National Geographic. Retrieved 19 July 2016.
  2. ^ a b c d "UC Davis Entomologist Discovers New Species of Wasp: Gigantic Wasp with Long, Powerful Jaws". UC Davis Department of Entomology. 19 August 2011. Archived from the original on 12 September 2011. Retrieved 24 August 2011.
  3. ^ Berliner Forscher entdeckt Monster-Wespe
  4. ^ Maryati/Ani H (5 May 2012). "The discovery of Megalara garuda". Voice of Indonesia. Retrieved 6 January 2016..
  5. ^ a b c d Kimsey, L.; Ohl, M. (2012). "Megalara garuda, a new genus and species of larrine wasps from Indonesia (Larrinae, Crabronidae, Hymenoptera)". ZooKeys. 177 (177): 49–57. doi:10.3897/zookeys.177.2475. PMC 3317617. PMID 22532785..
  6. ^ Pensoft Publishers (23 March 2012). "Megalara garuda: the King of Wasps".