Megachilidae

Pronunciation:  [Mega·KYLE·i·dee]

Common Name:   Leafcutter bees;  Mason bees

Description:   Most megachilids are stout-bodied, medium-sized bees with two submarginal cells in the front wings.   Pollen is carried in a distinctive mat of long hairs located on the ventral side of the abdomen (scopa).   Adults build solitary nests in narrow, hollow cavities.   They cut out rounded pieces of leaf to use as lining for their brood cells.   Larvae develop on provisions of pollen stored by the female within the brood cell.

megachilid03

Spot ID Key Characters:

  1. Front wing with two submarginal cells
  2. Pollen basket (scopa) on ventral side of abdomen
  3. “Heart”-shaped abdomen

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Order:  Hymenoptera