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Trachusa (Heteranthidium) larreae on Honey Mesquite 1 May 2008 Sentenac Cienega, ABDSP, CA - Trachusa larreae - male

Trachusa (Heteranthidium) larreae on Honey Mesquite 1 May 2008 Sentenac Cienega, ABDSP, CA - Trachusa larreae - Male
Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, San Diego County, California, USA
May 1, 2008
Size: about 12-12.5 mm
What fascinates me about this bee is the "eye" right at the base of the wing. It's also colorful with some red on the femora. I saw it on Honey Mesquite in Sentenac Cienega in Anza-Borrego Desert State Park.

The "eye" is indeed intriguing.
I once shot a "four-eyed" grasshopper. Also, the green darner male features the CBS eye logo. Your critter, however, earns honors for the most realistic.

Trachusa (Heteranthidium) larreae

Are they oligolectic on
Creosote Bush? Or just one of the plants used by females for pollen gathering?

Trachusa (Heteranthidium) larreae
Thanks so much. I never dreamed this would be a megachile!

Lynn Monroe

Great image.
Thank you for sharing your great images here, Lynn.

not a Megachile
a MegachilIDAe

Trachusa (Heteranthidium) larreae and Creosote Bush
Whoops! I meant Megachilidae of course.

About creosote, I looked up the bee in Krombein et al Cataloge of Hymenoptera. . . . It states"Oligolege of Larrea tridentata, but visits other flowers for nectar...."

Thanks, Lynn,
for looking this up. I had forgotten I could look at this online on the Biodiversity Heritage Library site.
I had a foggy memory of reading about oligolectic bees on Creosote bush, but couldn't recall where. Michener (2007) mentions that there are ~22 bee species that collect pollen only from Larrea tridentata. Only two of those species are said to be active during the late summer bloom; see Hurd & Linsley (1975) The principal Larrea bees of the southwestern United States. Smithsonian Contributions to Zoology, 193. Finally, thanks to this little exchange and your photos, I downloaded a PDF of this paper.
Creosote bush is fascinating in so many respects...

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