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Anthophila (Apoidea) - Bees

Large Carpenter Bee - Xylocopa virginica - female Cuckoo bee - Triepeolus lunatus Another bee - Halictus ligatus - female Green  ? whatever - Agapostemon - male Give A Wave - Bombus ternarius - male Leafcutter? - Megachile perihirta - male Apis mellifera? - Apis mellifera - female Andrena - Andrena wilkella - male Plasterer Bee - Colletes simulans - female Green-eyed (Melittid) bee - Hesperapis
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
Other Common Names
Spanish abeja, French abeille
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
bees probably arise from within Crabronidae, rather than being sister to Crabronidae(1)
Explanation of Names
English bee is from Old English bēo, ultimately from the Indo-European bhī meaning bee, or insect (Wiktionary--bee, beo). Most modern non-Romance European languages have a word for bee derived from this same Indo-European root. It seems likely that the word originated as an imitation of the buzzing of bees, i.e., it is echoic (Partridge 1958)
~3,500 spp. in our area; >20,000 described spp. worldwide(2)
Pronotum short, collar-like. Body usually very hairy. A distinctive feature of bees is that their hairs (at least some of them, particularly on the thorax) are branched or plumose; while those of wasps are simple. The hairs of bees collect pollen that they periodically brush and store on pollen transporting apparatus:
1. Scopae, brushes of hairs on the hind legs or on the abdomen of Megachilidae.
2. Corbiculae, basket-like structures on the hind tibia, as in the honey bee and related groups, (corbiculate Apidae).
The bees that lay their eggs in other bees' nests, “cuckoo bees", look wasplike; they have less hair and lack pollen transporting apparatus.
Key to e. US spp. in(3), to e. Canada genera in(4), to cleptoparasitic larvae in(5)


Family Andrenidae - Mining Bees

Family Apidae - Cuckoo, Carpenter, Digger, Bumble, and Honey Bees

Family Colletidae - Plasterer Bees, Masked or Yellow-faced Bees

Family Halictidae - Sweat Bees

Family Megachilidae - Leaf-cutter Bees, Mason Bees, and allies

Family Melittidae - Melittid Bees
Worldwide, except high mountains and polar regions. However, there are a few bumble bees that live within the Arctic circle such as (B. polaris and its social parasite B. hyperboreus (Heinrich. Bumblebee economics).
Primarily nectar and pollen from flowers. A few collect floral oils.
Many species collect pollen from a wide range of plants (polylectic), others specialize on some members of the same family (mesolectic), or on a single genus (oligolectic), or rarely only one species (monolectic)
Pollen collecting bees are extremely important for the pollination of plants, including many crops such as most fruits and vegetables. Their pollinating services in the U. S. have been estimated in the millions of dollars. Not only honey bees but many other species of bees play this role. Honey bees and bumble bees are eusocial; their colonies consist of a queen, workers and drones. Some halictid bees are primitively social.
Melittosphex burmensis Poinar and Danforth is allegedly the oldest fossil bee, but this placement has not been endorsed by all leading apoid specialists, some of whom consider it a wasp or incertae sedis. See Melittosphex burmensis. Line drawing reconstructions show features of a definitive bee but published photographs do not. Wikipedia

Non-native Bees
Family Andrenidae – Mining Bees
Andrena wilkella, No common name. From Europe
Family Apidae – Cuckoo, Carpenter, Digger, Bumble, and Honey Bees
No common name, Anthophora villosula. From the Palaearctic. 1980s or 1990s
Apis mellifera, Honey Bee. From Europe, centuries ago
Centris nitida, No common name. From the Neotropics, very recently
Ceratina dallatorreana, No common name. From Europe and the Middle East
Euglossa viridissima, Green Orchid Bee. From the Neotropics, very recently
Family Colletidae – Plasterer Bees, Masked or Yellow-faced Bees
Hylaeus hyalinatus, No common name. From Europe, North Africa
Hylaeus leptocephalus, No common name. From the Palaearctic
Hylaeus punctatus, No common name. Very recently
Family Halictidae – Sweat Bees
Halictus tectus, No common name. From Europe, recently
Lasioglossum leucozonium, No common name. From the Palaearctic
Lasioglossum zonulum, No common name. From the Palaearctic
Family Megachilidae – Leaf-cutter bees, Mason Bees, and allies
Anthidium manicatum, Wool Carder Bee. From Europe
Anthidium oblongatum, No common name. From Europe, 1995
Chelostoma campanularum , No common name. From Europe
Chelostoma rapunculi, No common name. From the Palaearctic
Coelioxys coturnix, No common name. From Europe, very recently
Hoplitis anthocopoides, No common name. From Europe
Lithurgus chrysurus, Mediterranean Wood Boring Bee. From Europe in 1978
Megachile apicalis, No common name. From Europe and the Middle East
Megachile concinna, Pale leafcutting bee. From Africa
Megachile lanata, No common name. From Ethiopian/Oriental regions
Megachile rotundata, Alfalfa Leafcutter Bee. From the Old World
Megachile sculpturalis, Giant Resin Bee. From Asia, 1990s
Megachile umbripennis, No common name. From Asia
Osmia caerulescens, No common name. From the Palaearctic
Osmia cornifrons, Hornfaced Bee. From Japan, 1977
Osmia taurus, No common name. From SE Asia, recently
Pseudoanthidium nanum, No common name. From Europe, very recently
Print References
Danforth et al. (2006) (history of early bee diversification)
Internet References
Guides to genera by Sam Droege
North American bee-associated mites, by B. O'Connor et al.
Works Cited
1.Identifying the sister group to the bees: a molecular phylogeny of aculeata with an emphasis on the superfamily Apoidea
Debevec A.H., Cardinal S., Danforth B.N. 2012. Zoologica Scripta 41: 527-535.
2.The bees of Colorado (Hymenoptera: Apoidea: Anthophila)
V.L. Scott, J.S. Ascher, T. Griswold, C.R. Nufio. 2011. Natural History Inventory of Colorado 23: vi+100 pp.
3.Bees of the eastern United States
T.B. Mitchell. 1962. Tech. Bull. (NC Agric. Experiment Station): No. 141 (538 pp.), 1960; and No. 152 (557 pp.).
4.The bee genera of Eastern Canada
L. Packer, J.A. Genaro, C.S. Sheffield. 2007. Canadian Journal of Arthropod Identification 3.
5.A taxonomic key to mature larvae of cleptoparasitic bees (Hymenoptera: Apoidea)
Rozen J.G., Jr. 2001. Am. Mus. Novitates 309: 1-27.
6.The Bees of the World, 2nd edition
Charles D. Michener. 2007. The Johns Hopkins University Press.
7.Bees of the World
C. O'Toole & A. Raw. 1999. Blandford. 192 pp.
8.Bees of Wisconsin (Hymenoptera: Apoidea: Anthophila)
A.T. Wolf & J.S. Ascher. 2009. The Great Lakes Entomologist 41: 129-168.
9. The Bees of Florida
10.Principal sunflower bees of North America with emphasis on the southwestern United States
Hurd P.D., LaBerge W.E., Linsley E.G. 1980. Smiths. Contr. Zool. 310.
11.Insect visitors of Illinois wildflowers
12.The Bee Inventory Plot