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Melissodes tepaneca Cresson, 1878
Melissodes petalostemonis Robertson, 1900; Melissodes galvestonensis Cockerell, 1905; Melissodes bruesi Cockerell, 1906; Melissodes loena Cockerell, 1909; Melissodes masuca Cockerell, 1909; Melissodes tepaneca aschenborniana Cockerell, 1912; Melissodes aurescens Cockerell, 1949

Life   Insecta   Hymenoptera   Apoidea   Apidae   Melissodes
Subgenus: Melissodes

Melissodes tepaneca, f, back, SC, Jasper Co ---.
© Copyright source/photographer · 5
Melissodes tepaneca, f, back, SC, Jasper Co ---.

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Melissodes tepaneca, f, face, SC, Jasper Co ---.
© Copyright source/photographer · 5
Melissodes tepaneca, f, face, SC, Jasper Co ---.
Melissodes tepaneca, f, side, SC, Jasper Co ---.
© Copyright source/photographer · 5
Melissodes tepaneca, f, side, SC, Jasper Co ---.
Reprinted with permission from: Mitchell, T.B. 1962 Bees of the Eastern United States. North Carolina Agricultural Experiment Station Technical Bulletin No. 152.

FEMALE—Length 12-13 mm., breadth of abdomen 4.5 mm.; black, the mandibles more reddish, with an obscure faint yellow area apically; segments of flagellum beyond the 2nd testaceous beneath, piceous above, basal segments darker brownish; apical tarsal segments and entire hind tibiae and tarsi brownish-testaceous, spurs pale yellow, tegulae yellowish-hyaline; wings pale yellowish-hyaline, veins testaceous to brownish; abdominal terga becoming narrowly yellowish-hyaline apically; cheeks considerably narrower than eyes; clypeus very slightly protuberant, its median length slightly less than half the distance between eyes below; eyes very slightly convergent below; shorter side of segment of flagellum about equal to breadth, about half the length of segment 1; punctures of clypeus rather coarse but shallow, slightly separated, becoming fine and densely crowded along apical margin, those on labrum very fine and densely crowded medially, becoming rather sparse laterally; lateral areas of face above clypeus finely, closely and rather shallowly punctate, the supraclypeal area very sparsely punctate, punctures becoming very sparse on each side above antennae where the surface is shining, but close and fine medially below ocelli, vertex closely and finely punctate behind ocelli; cheeks shining, with fine, slightly separated punctures posteriorly, these becoming minute and indefinite toward eye margin; scutum shining between rather deep, moderately coarse punctures, these well separated over posterior half of disc, becoming closer laterally and anteriorly, those on scutellum somewhat finer and quite close; pleura somewhat shining between quite deep, distinct and rather coarse punctures, these well separated in general but becoming closer above beneath wing bases; posterior face of propodeum dull, punctures rather close but not very coarse, dorsal area quite coarsely hut shallowly and closely punctate, lateral faces dull and tessellate between fine and very shallow punctures beneath dense pubescence; basal abdominal tergum quite closely and deeply punctate across base, punctures nearly reaching apical margin at each side, becoming more sparse apically, the broad median area impunctate; tergum 2 with deep, distinct, fine and well separated punctures across basal half, apical half with scattered, exceedingly minute, barely visible punctures; basal area of tergum 3 much more closely punctate, 5 and 6 very densely and finely rugoso-punctate, punctures of apical areas of 4 and 5 very fine but definite and distinct; pygidium triangular, with narrowly rounded apex; pubescence of head almost entirely pale ochraceous, with only a few dark hairs on vertex between ocelli, and thorax densely pale ochraceous pubescent, largely obscuring surface of scutum and scutellum, long and copious elsewhere; pubescence of legs largely pale, but front coxae with a few dark hairs, and front basitarsi with some dark hairs anteriorly, mid tibiae with more brownish pubescence on outer surface, the hind tibial scopa pale yellowish, hairs distinctly plumose; basal abdominal tergum with rather abundant, pale ochraceous pubescence across base, apical portion of disc with some suberect, dark pubescence visible toward each side; terga 2 and 3 with whitish, basal fasciae that are usually covered by the preceding tergal plate, and a narrow, median, whitish fascia separated from basal fascia by an area of suberect fuscous pubescence, and with some blackish pubescence across the apical impressed areas; tergum 4 with some blackish, suberect pubescence across base, but the broad apical area densely covered with whitish tomentum which is slightly interrupted on apical margin medially; terga 5 and 6 largely blackish or fuscous pubescent, with some pale hairs on 5 laterally.

MALE—Length 9.5-11 mm., breadth of abdomen 3.5 mm.; black, the clypeus, labrum and base of mandibles bright yellow, mandibles with a testaceous apical maculation; antennal flagellum pale testaceous beneath, piceous above; apical tarsal segments becoming testaceous, tibiae more or less infused with testaceous apically, spurs pale yellow, tegulae testaceous or yellowish-hyaline; wings faintly yellowish, veins pale testaceous to brownish; apical margins of abdominal terga broadly yellowish-hyaline; cheeks little more than half as broad as eyes; clypeus only slightly protuberant, its median length about half the distance between eyes below; eyes quite strongly convergent below; basal segment of flagellum about equal to pedicel in length, segment 2 fully six times this length; punctures of clypeus rather shallow and obscure, well separated above medially, becoming rather close at each extreme side, close and fine on apical margin, those on labrum fine and close medially, becoming quite sparse laterally; lateral areas of face above clypeus quite closely and rather finely punctate, supraclypeal area impunctate medially, face becoming finely and densely punctate on each side, surface above antennae becoming minutely and more sparsely punctate between eyes and ocelli, surface shining, median area quite coarsely and closely punctate; punctures of vertex close and rather fine behind ocelli, cheeks shining, with rather fine and close punctures posteriorly, these becoming very minute and sparse toward eye margin; scutum shining, punctures quite deep and distinct, rather coarse and widely separated medially over posterior half, becoming much closer laterally and anteriorly, somewhat finer and rather sparse on scutellum, and pleura shining between deep, distinct and rather sparse punctures; posterior face of propodeum rather dull, punctures quite coarse, deep and close, dorsal area rather coarsely, closely and shallowly punctate, lateral areas more shining, punctures somewhat finer and quite close throughout; discs of abdominal terga with quite deep, distinct, well separated punctures medially, the punctures becoming slightly closer laterally and coarser across base, finer and more sparse toward the largely impunctate, impressed, apical areas, those on 4 and 5 very close across the base, crowded on 6; tergum 5 only obscurely angulate at each extreme side, and 6 with a rather short, slender, apical spine at each side; pubescence entirely pale yellowish on head, thorax and legs; basal abdominal tergum largely covered with pale ochraceous pubescence, but with some obscure, suberect, dark pubescence across apical third; tergum 2 with a rather broad, basal, pale tomentose fascia which is covered in part by the preceding plate, and with a narrow submedian pale fascia, these separated by an area of suberect blackish hairs, and apical impressed area with similar dark hairs; terga 3 and 4 with submedian, pale ochraceous fasciae, the basal pubescence suberect but entirely pale, apical areas with more elongate, suberect hairs; tergum 5 with a subapical fascia and with some elongate dark hairs across base; tergum 6 apparently entirely dark pubescent; median length of pygidial plate about equal to basal width, slightly narrowed apically, with a narrow but deep subapical constriction on each side, apex subtruncate or broadly rounded; sterna 7 and 8 as shown (fig. 82); genital armature resembling comptoides (Fig. 81), but gonostyli very short, without evident setae.
DISTRIBUTION — Central America, north and east to Kansas, Illinois, North Carolina and Florida, March to November in the United States.

FLOWER RECORDS — LaBerge (1956) lists the following genera as host plants the United States: Abutilon, Agastache, Asclepias, Aster, Baccharis, Borrichia, Brazoria, Callirrhoe, Cephalanthus, Cercidium, Coreopsis, Dalea, Eryngium, Gaillardia, Gossypium, Grindelia, Helenium, Lactuca, Lindheimeria, Lythrum, Marrubium, Medicago, Monarda, Opuntia, Parkinsonia, Petalostemon, Phacelia, Phlox, Prosopis, Ratibida, Rubus, Rudbeckia, Salvia, Sisyrinchium, Teucrium, Verbesina and Verbena.

Scientific source:

Supported by

Hosts · map
FamilyScientific name @ source (records)
Asteraceae  Baccharis salicina @ AMNH_BEE (2)

Baccharis @ AMNH_BEE (4)

Helianthus annuus @ AMNH_BEE (1)
Fabaceae  Cercidium @ AMNH_BEE (1)

Parkinsonia aculeata @ AMNH_BEE (3)

Prosopis juliflora @ BBSL (1)

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Updated: 2018-05-26 10:49:18 gmt
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