Halictidae, Nomiinae

Wed Apr 15, 2015 4:09 pm

Subfamily Nomiinae
The Nomiinae, in large, have the first and third submarginal cells in the forewing subequal in length and distinctly longer than the second submarginal cell. The exception is Steganomus, which has only two submarginal cells, and is the only halictid genus in Africa with two submarginal cells. They are all pollen collecting bees. They nest in tunnels in the ground.

Hymenoptera, Halictidae, Nomiinae, Spatunomia

Wed Apr 15, 2015 4:10 pm

Genus Spatunomia
Spatunomia was described for two widely separated, large (13-15 mm) species with a dark red metasoma without hairbands.
There is a strong preoccipital carina in the male. The pronotum lacks a carina (except on the pronotal lobe) but extends across in front of, and at the level of, the scutum, so that the scutum does not bend down to the pronotum.
The most remarkable features of the genus are the simple mandibles in the female and the pedunculate last antennal segment in the male, which has a slender base and a broad flattened apical region.
They occur in widely separated areas, in Sudan and southern Africa.

Links: The Bees of the World. Charles Duncan Michener

Re: AW Insect Book: Sawflies, Wasps, Bees & Ants (Hymenopter

Wed Apr 15, 2015 4:11 pm

Halictid Bee Spatunomia rubra
Superfamily Apoidea. Family Halictidae. Subfamily Nomiinae

Image © BluTuna
Males roosting on a branch.

Image © BluTuna
Kruger National Park, Crocodile Bridge Camp

Apoidea, Halictidae, Halictinae, Halictini

Wed Apr 15, 2015 6:14 pm

Subfamily Halictinae, Tribe Halictini
The Halictinae have the antennal sockets in the middle of the face, the anterior tentorial pit on the epistomal suture, the first submarginal cell of the forewing is longer than the second and third submarginals, which are similar in size, and the pollen collecting females have a median specialized area on tergum 5 (a longitudinal median furrow that divides the prepygidial fimbria), which is unique. It is divided into two tribes; the Halictini and the Augochlorini, of which only the former occurs in Africa. This tribe comprises five pollen collecting and two cleptoparasitic genera.

AW Insect Book: Sawflies Wasps Bees Ants Pics & Descript

Wed Apr 15, 2015 6:25 pm

Sweat Bee Halictus jucundus/Seladonia jucunda
Superfamily Apoidea. Family Halictidae. Subfamily Halictinae. Tribe Halictini

Image © BluTuna
Garden in Johannesburg

Seladonia is a subgenus of Halictus. Another viable way of classification is treating Seladonia as a genus.
Sub-Saharan species of Seladonia all have metallic reflections. Some other species of sub-Saharan halictine bees have metallic reflections but they can be separated by a carinate propodeum (Ctenonomia, Ipomalictus), lack of apical hair bands (Afrodialictus) or weak distal wing venation.

Description Halictus jucundus
Both sexes densely punctate; female with scopa; T5 with posterolongitudinal area of inward directed hairs.

Links: Zoologische Mededelingen, 82 (June 2008). A. Pauly: Catalogue of the sub-Saharan species of the genus Seladonia Robertson, 1918, with description of two new species (Hymenoptera: Apoidea: Halictidae)

Re: AW Insect Book: Sawflies Wasps Bees Ants Pics & Descript

Wed Apr 15, 2015 6:41 pm

Sweat Bee Lasioglossum sp.
Superfamily Apoidea. Family Halictidae. Subfamily Halictinae. Tribe Halictini

Image © BluTuna
Garden in Johannesburg

Lasioglossum sp. have the distal veins in the forewing distinctly fainter than those to the wing base (diagnostic feature). They are all pollen collecting bees.

Apoidea, Megachilidae

Wed Apr 15, 2015 7:07 pm

Family Megachilidae (Leaf Cutting Bees, Membrane Bees)
The Megachilidae are long-tongued bees in which the non-parasitic species have the scopa under the metasoma. The male tergum 7 is often not visible from above.
They are commonly called the leaf-cutter bees; but in reality the family comprises almost every type of nest building behaviour: leaf-cutters, daubers, carpenters, carders and soil nesters. Megachilids provision the nest with pollen and nectar. Some species are cleptoparasites laying their egg on the pollen stores collected by other megachilid bees.

This family comprises two subfamilies:
Megachilinae (Tribes: Anthidiini, Dioxyini, Lithurgini, Megachilini, Osmiini)
The genera of the Osmiini and Anthidiini are notoriously difficult to separate.

Apoidea, Megachilidae, Megachilinae

Wed Apr 15, 2015 7:14 pm

Subfamily Megachilinae
The Megachilinae comprises five tribes: Lithurgini, Osmiini, Anthidiini, Dioxyini and Megachilini, and they all occur in the Afrotropical Region. They all have two submarginal cells in the forewing, and the female pollen collectors have the scopaon the metasomal sterna. Males and cleptoparasitic species are more difficult to identify.

Apoidea, Megachilidae, Megachilinae, Megachilini

Wed Apr 15, 2015 7:17 pm

Tribe Megachilini
The Megachilini is a large cosmopolitan tribe of bees. In sub-Saharan Africa there are two genera, Coelioxys, which are cleptoparasites, and Megachile, which are pollen collectors.

AW Insect Book: Sawflies Wasps Bees Ants Pics & Descript

Wed Apr 15, 2015 7:23 pm

Cuckoo Bee Coelioxys apicata
Superfamily Apoidea. Family Megachilidae. Subfamily Megachilinae. Tribe Megachilini

Image © BluTuna

Each species of Coelioxys is a cleptoparasite only of certain host species. A female Coelioxys can use its sharp abdomen to pierce the cells of other Megachile species where an egg is then laid in the cell. The egg of the Coelioxys hatches before that of the Megachile and the newly-hatched larva crushes the Megachile egg with its large jaws. The Coelioxys larva can then feed on the contents of the cell. Pupation occurs within a cocoon spun within the host cell where the larva overwinters as a prepupa. The genus Anthophora excavates nest burrows in sandy soil or rotting wood, where they may also become the hosts of Coelioxys larvae.
Female Coelioxys should be treated with care as they may sting; males are said to emit an unpleasant odour when handled.

Metasoma pointed distally, bifurcate in males, not curled under. A darkly coloured bee with sharply defined hair bands on the abdomen. The hairless eyes are strikingly different from those of most subgenera.
Females have a 6 segment, elongated abdomen and the males a 7 segment spiny one.

Througout Africa.

Links: Discover Life