Long-horned Bee


Melisodes bee from the Bradshaw Mountains, Arizona photo © by Mike Plagens

On flowers of New Mexico Thistle (Cirsium neomexicanum) in a riparian canyon in the Bradshaw Mts., Yavapai Co., Arizona, USA. 24 May 2015. This is an old male with tattered wings.

New Mexico Thistle

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Small to medium sized bees with long antennae - the male's antennae is considerably longer. Melissodes is a genus of bees to which many species have been assigned. Microscopic examination by entomologists with considerable expertise is necessary to identify specifically. These bees build solitary nests in the ground consisting of tunnels. Nest building is solely accomplished by the females. Cells within the nests are provisioned with a mixture of nectar and pollen.

Apidae -- Bee Family

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Copyright Michael J. Plagens, page created 21 July 2015