This bizarre creature is gasteruption jaculator. Whoever named it should be banned forthwith from all future namings. I am grateful to afrenchgarden for the I.D. I was wrongly was calling it a sand digger wasp. I have never seen one in my garden before this year. Yesterday I noticed one feeding on fennel pollen but was unable to get a decent shot before it flew away. So, today, I returned to the fennel plant at the same time of day and, low and behold, there it was. And I was delighted to be able to capture it in flight!
It is an elegant creature with its long spike looking not unlike a cigarette holder from the 1920s (or is that just me?). I am assuming this is the female. Her consort, a much smaller beast without cigarette holder, is below. (It’s a lousy shot, I know, but illustrative.)
For an earlier post on other wasps found in my garden, see here.