long-horned bees

(Melissodes spp.)

               
Overview

Melissodes is a genus of late-season long-horned bees. It occurs throughout the the western hemisphere, from northern Canada to Argentina. There are at least 140 species worldwide, 97 species in North America north of Mexico, and at least 15 species in Minnesota. They are found mostly in late summer and fall, when the majority of their host plants are in bloom. A few are generalist feeders but most are specialist feeders, feeding on the pollen of plants in a single genus or family of plants. Most feed exclusively on plants in the aster (Asteraceae) family. Most of these will feed on any plant in the aster family. A few specialize in plants in a single genus.

long-horned bee (Melissodes sp.)

  Photo by Alfredo Colon
 

Melissodes bees usually nest alone in the ground in sand or sandy loam soil. Adults are active during the day. Females spend the night in their nest. Males often congregate on groups of 10 to 20 at the end of the day. They grasp a plant with their mandibles and hang, unmoving, until morning. They are easy to photograph in the late afternoon.

Identification

Melissodes are hairy, moderately large bees, as large to one-and-a-half times larger than a western honey bee. Males have very long antennae, much longer than females.

 
Distribution Distribution Map  

Sources: 24, 27, 29, 30, 82.

 
Comments

 

 
Taxonomy

Order:

Hymenoptera (ants, bees, wasps, and sawflies)

 

Suborder:

Apocrita (wasps, ants and bees)

 

Infraorder:

Aculeata

 

Superfamily:

Apoidea (apoid wasps, bees, sphecoid wasps)

 

Family:

Apidae (bumble bees, honey bees, and stingless bees)

 

Subfamily:

Apinae (honey, bumble, long-horned, orchid, and digger bees)

 

Tribe:

Eucerini (long-horned bees)

 

Genus:

Melissodes

 
Subordinate Taxa

long-horned bees (Subgenus Apomelissodes)

long-horned bees (Subgenus Callimelissodes)

long-horned bees (Subgenus Heliomelissodes)

nominate melissodes bees (Subgenus Melissodes)

true melissodes bees (Subgenus Eumelissodes)

 
Synonyms

 

 
Common
Names

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

       
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Alfredo Colon
       
  long-horned bee (Melissodes sp.)   long-horned bee (Melissodes sp.)
       
  long-horned bee (Melissodes sp.)   long-horned bee (Melissodes sp.)
       

Bumble Bee from Woodbury, MN

Found this guy sleeping early in the morning.

  long-horned bee (Melissodes sp.)    
       
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Other Videos
 
  Melissodes visits Helianthus in Ohio, USA July 20, 2016
obert Klips
 
   
 
About

Jul 20, 2016

Melissodes is a solitary ground-nesting bee with an affinity for pollen from flowers of the aster family (Asteraceae). Here, several females visits Helianthus (sunflower) at a garden in Franklin County, Ohio, USA July 20, 2016

   
       
  Melissodes Long-Horned Bee
Oregon Bee
 
   
 
About

Aug 21, 2019

Melissodes Long-Horned Bee

   
       
  Long-horned Bee (Apidae: Melissodes) on Blossom
Carl Barrentine
 
   
 
About

Sep 5, 2010

Photographed at Kellys Slough NWR, North Dakota (05 September 2010).

   
       

 

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Alfredo Colon
8/9/2019

Location: Woodbury, Minnesota

long-horned bee (Melissodes sp.)


Alfredo Colon
8/6/2019

Location: Woodbury, Minnesota

long-horned bee (Melissodes sp.)


Alfredo Colon
Summer 2019

Location: Woodbury, Minnesota

long-horned bee (Melissodes sp.)


     
     
 
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Created: 2/15/2020

Last Updated:

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