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Genus Coelioxys - Sharptail Bees

Sleeping Bee - Coelioxys - male Coelioxys octodentata - Coelioxys octodentatus - male Coelioxys Cuckoo Leafcutter Bee - Coelioxys sayi - female bee - Coelioxys Cuckoo Bee - Coelioxys Cuckoo Leaf-cutter Bees Genus Coelioxys - Coelioxys - female Coelioxys octodentatus - male
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 (Apoidea (clade Anthophila) - Bees)
Family Megachilidae (Leafcutter, Mason, and Resin Bees, and allies)
Subfamily Megachilinae (Leafcutter, Resin, Mortar, Sharptail, Mason, and Woolcarder bees and relatives)
Tribe Megachilini (Leafcutter, Resin, Mortar, and Sharptail bees)
Genus Coelioxys (Sharptail Bees)
Other Common Names
Cuckoo Leaf-cutting Bees, Cuckoo Leaf-cutter Bees
Pronunciation
seal-ee-OX-ees
Explanation of Names
Coelioxys Latreille 1809
Greek coelia 'belly' + oxys 'sharp'(1) (refers to the sharp ovipositor and tapered female abdomen)
Numbers
46 spp. in 9 subgenera in our area, ~500 spp. in 15 subgenera worldwide(2)
Size
7-10 mm
Identification
Abdomen conical, pointed in female, armed with teeth or spines in male(3); lack pollen baskets under abdomen, otherwise resemble a Megachile
Range
worldwide [Discover Life Map(2)]
Habitat
Seen at flowers in fields, etc.
Season
Typically Jun-Sep in NC(4)
Food
Adults take nectar at flowers. (They must be eating for themselves, because they do not provision a nest.)
Life Cycle
Cleptoparasites, usually of Megachile (other hosts known outside our area). Using their sharp abdomen, the female breaks into Megachile nests (and removes eggs?) laying its own eggs on the provisions (stored pollen)(5)(6)
Print References
Baker J.R. (1975) Taxonomy of five nearctic subgenera of Coelioxys (Hymenoptera: Megachilidae). U. Kans. Sci. Bull. 50: 649-730.
Internet References