Species name: Cuckoo Wasp
Scientific name: Hedychridium anithaae
Locally known as: Daboor
Description: This wasp has black wings and can flex its abdomen in a curling position when it is attacked.
IUCN status: Not evaluated.
Key threats: Habitat loss.
Where they’re found today: Wetland habitat with vegetation (Inland standing water habitats and habitats of moist ground) and farm areas in Abu Dhabi.
Abu Dhabi’s efforts: The Cuckoo Wasp, which is unique to the UAE, was found and collected by EAD on a routine wildlife trapping exercise at Al Wathba Wetland Reserve in 2009 and was declared a new species.. Since then, the wasp has been added to a global list of invertebrates that catalogues all known species. EAD continues to ensure the effective management and monitoring of the emerald-coloured species. Establishment of various protected areas is helping to ensure conservation of suitable habitat prevent disturbance. EAD undertakes continuous monitoring of the species, within and outside protected areas.
- The wasp was named Hedychridium anithaae in honour of the EAD scientist who discovered it, Dr Anita Saji.
- The cuckoo wasp is also commonly known as the emerald wasp for its shiny metallic-coloured body.
- Mother wasps sneak into the nests of other insects and lay their eggs onto the growing larvae. Once it’s hatched, the baby Cuckoo Wasp eats the host larva.