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TaxonomyBrowse
Info
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Subgenus Psithyrus

Bombus? - Bombus fernaldae - male Bumble Bee - Bombus Lemon Cuckoo Bumble Bee, dorsal - Bombus citrinus Bumble Bee - Bombus fernaldae Which Bombus, please? - Bombus citrinus bumblebee - Bombus citrinus - male Bombus 3 - Bombus citrinus Cuckoo Bumble Bee? - Bombus fernaldae
Classification
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Hexapoda (Hexapods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Hymenoptera (Ants, Bees, Wasps and Sawflies)
No Taxon (Aculeata - Ants, Bees and Stinging Wasps)
No Taxon (Anthophila (Apoidea) - Bees)
Family Apidae (Cuckoo, Carpenter, Digger, Bumble, and Honey Bees)
Subfamily Apinae (Honey, Bumble, Long-horned, Orchid, and Digger Bees)
Tribe Bombini (Bumble Bees)
Genus Bombus (Bumble Bees)
No Taxon Subgenus Psithyrus
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
used to be treated as a separate genus (discussion + list and distribution of world spp.)(1)
Numbers
6 spp. in our area, 30 spp. total(2)
Size
Males are much smaller than females.
Identification
Females differ from those of all other Bombus in having the outer surface of the hind tibia convex and densely hairy (flat or concave and largely bare in other, pollen-collecting Bombus). Males have small heads and often have conspicuous bare patches on the apical terga medially.
Range
holarctic, most diverse in Eurasia; in our area, widespread: 4 spp. are transcontinental in the north and range south along the Rockies (except B. ashtoni), B. citrinus ne. US + adjacent Canada, B. variabilis e. half of the US (+QC) to AZ in the south(2)
Food
Social parasites of other bumble bees.
Life Cycle
There is no worker caste, the females invade Bombus nests and lay eggs there to be reared by the hosts(1)
Internet References
Mol.Phylogent. Evol. A phylogenetic analysis of cuckoo bumblebees (Psithyrus, Lepeletier) and bumblebees (Bombus, Latreille) inferred from sequences of the mitochondrial gene cytochrome oxidase I.