IDENTIFICATION PAGE # 23
November 2021


BEES FROM HIDALGO & CAMERON COUNTIES
Coelioxys, Svastra & Protandrena

Identification Page #22
Perdita, Eucera

BEES BELOW HERE HAVE BEEN IDENTIFIED ALREADY.

Protandrena  (Pterosarus) ornatipes

Size: 6 mm  ( female and male)

Associated plant:

Camphor daisy

(Rayjacksonia phyllocephala)

When seen:   Nov. 9, 2021
Laguna Atascosa NWLR 

Cameron Co.  (Los Fresnos)

Female Protandrena ornatipes

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Dorsal view

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The female bees has ridges along the outer edge of each jaw.

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Close-up of face of female bee

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The male bee's legs are primarily yellow, with black markings. Its pronotal lobes are also yellow.

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Face of male bee

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Dorsal view of male bee

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Female bee

Female bee

Male bee

PROTANDRENA?  Is this small bee a Protandrena or Pseudopanurgus?   It was feeding on camphor daisy in Laguna-Atascosa NWR along with dozens of other similar females.  All of the females I looked at  -- about ten in all -- had an identical small yellow boomerang shape on the face.   Females also have yellow on the pronotal lobes and on the base of each front and midldle tibia.  

 

I found only one male feeding alongside the females -- I'm not sure if it's the same species, but I've included pictures of it below.  It's the same size as the females.  The forewings of both males and females have two submarginal cells.   There is a pale yellow spot/area between the stigma and prestigma on both the male and female bees.  [Nov. 17 note:  males identical tothat shown here were later found mating with the females, so male ID now confirmed. ] The bee I found that most resembles the male is Pseudopanurgus nebracensis/aestivalis:  (https://www.discoverlife.org/mp/20q?search=Pseudopanurgus+nebrascensis)   I don't have TImberlake's revision of Pseudopanurgus, because it is under embargo.

The other  Protandrena you've identified for us are  P. bancrofti  from NW Hidalgo Co.  (much larger, with markings that are shaped differently and cream-colored rather than yellow)  and P. texana  from Starr Co. (only slightly larger, but no markings on face, pronotal lobes or tibiae). 

Coelioxys (Glyptocoelioxys) totonaca

Size: 11 mm  (female)

Associated plant:

Crucita  (Chromolaena odorata)

When seen:   Nov. 6 2021
Quinta Mazatlan - McAllen TX

Southernmost Hidalgo Co.

Female Coelioxys

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View of thorax & spines on scutellum and axillae

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Alternate view of spines on scutellum

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View of head & front of thorax

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Face

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female bee

female bee

This female Coelioxys has a median spine on its scutellum, in addition to two long lateral spines on the axillae.   Is this some kind of Coelioxys (Glyptocoelioxys)?  It was feeding on crucita a stone's throw from the Mexican border in Hidalgo County.  The only other Coelioxys I have listed for the Valley are C. menthae, and the four species that appear on our website (Coeliioxys azteca, C. edita, C. texana and C. slossoni.  These four appear here:  https://www.wildbeestexas.com/coelioxys-bees ).  

If additional shots of the bee would be useful, let me know.  I also have saved the specimen & can send it to you.

Svastra petulca

Size: 13 mm  (male)

Associated plant:

Crucita  (Chromolaena odorata)

Spiked malvastrum Malvastrum americanun
    
var americanum

When seen:   Nov. 12 2021
Resaca de la Palma State Park

Cameron Co.  (Brownsville)

The bee's leg hairs are predominantly pale. The hairs on the vertex are pale. Hairs on the thorax are pale yellow and light brown (with no dark hairs in the middle of the scutum).

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Male bee

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Male Svastra

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Face of male bee

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Male bee

Male bee

SVASTRA:  This is a robustly-built, medium-large male  long-horned bee, with a black abdomen striped with narrow bands of pale hairs.   Is it possible that this is Svastra compta?   It has entirely light hairs on the thorax, and entirely light hairs on the hind legs.  Its abdomen is somewhat worn.  It was found feeding on crucita and spiked malvastrum at Resaca de la Palma State Park (Brownsville) on November 12, late in the day.

The Svastra we’ve found so far in the Valley include Svastra petulca, S. sabinensis, S. atripes and S. duplocincta.  The golden hind-leg hairs on this bee rule out S. atripes.  The bee seems small for a male S. petulca and lacks the dense, broad, abdominal hairbands of the male S. petulca -- but maybe this is just a badly worn S. petulca?  (e.g., see recent photos of Valley S. petulca here:

https://www.wildbeestexas.com/svastra