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Osmia caerulescens (Linnaeus, 1758)
Apis caerulescens Linnaeus, 1758; Apis aenea Linnaeus, 1761; Apis superbus Harris, 1776, possible synonym; Apis muraria_homonym Retzius, 1783; Apis cuprea Geoffroy, 1785; Andrena cupraria Walckenaer, 1802; Osmia rustica Cresson, 1864; Osmia purpurea_homonym Cresson, 1864; Osmia coerulescens (Linnaeus, 1758); Osmia dutti Cockerell, 1922; Andrena cyanea Fabricius, 1793; Megachile cyanea Walkenaer, 1802; Anthophora cyanea Fabricius, 1804; Osmia (Helicosmia) caerulescens cyanea (Fabricius, 1793), valid subspecies; Osmia (Chalcosmia) coerulescens (Linnaeus, 1758), alternative spelling; Osmia coerulescens cyanea (Fabricius, 1793)

Life   Insecta   Hymenoptera   Apoidea   Megachilidae   Osmia
Subgenus: Helicosmia

Osmia caerulescens FEM mm .x ZS PMax
© Copyright Laurence Packer 2014 · 7
Osmia caerulescens FEM mm .x ZS PMax

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Osmia caerulescens MALE mm x ZS PMax
© Copyright Laurence Packer 2014 · 7
Osmia caerulescens MALE mm x ZS PMax
Osmia caerulescens, M, side, Maine, Hancock County ---.. ZS PMax
© Copyright source/photographer · 5
Osmia caerulescens, M, side, Maine, Hancock County ---.. ZS PMax

Osmia caerulescens, Barcode of Life Data Systems
Barcode of Life Data Systems · 1
Osmia caerulescens, Barcode of Life Data Systems
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 10-11 mm.; dark blue, becoming almost black in some areas; face somewhat longer than distance between eyes above; eyes very slightly convergent below; lateral ocelli slightly nearer each other than eyes, and nearer eyes than to margin of vertex; clypeus strongly convex, apical margin considerably produced, median area straight and simple; labrum slightly longer than basal width; mandible obscurely 4-dentate (resembling that in albiventris, fig. 32); cheeks much wider than eyes; wings lightly infuscated, becoming somewhat more deeply so apically, 2nd recurrent vein reaching 2nd submarginal cell considerably nearer apex than 1st does to base; tarsal segments simple and unmodified, mid and hind spurs piceous; pubescence pale yellow on face, vertex and dorsum of thorax, whitish on cheeks, thorax laterally and beneath, and on abdomen, the scopa black; punctures quite deep and distinct, rather coarse in general, slightly separated on vertex medially, but becoming crowded on face below ocelli, on clypeus, and over most of cheeks; punctures slightly separated in a restricted area in center of scutum, but otherwise closely crowded on scutum, scutellum and pleura; lateral faces of propodeum somewhat shining, punctures minute and vague, posterior face becoming more shining, punctures shallow and obscure, dorsal area polished, but upper margin becoming narrowly striate; abdominal terga more finely punctate, punctures distinctly separated medially on 1-3, becoming somewhat more deep, distinct and close toward sides, more uniformly close on and 5, very fine and densely crowded on 6, apical margins of all narrowly depressed, butfinely and closely punctate to the rims; pubescence of abdominal terga quite copious, somewhat elongate on basal tergum, short erect and conspicuous on terga 2-5, these more or less distinctly yellowish fasciate apically, but the fasciae widely interrupted on the more basal terga; tergum 6 with fine, subappressed, pale tomentum.

MALE — Length 9 mm.; brassy green; face somewhat longer than distance between eyes above; eyes somewhat convergent below; lateral ocelli subequally distant from eyes and margin of vertex, slightly nearer each other; dypeus strongly convex, somewhat produced apically, median area nearly straight but margin obscurely crenulate; mandibles bidentate; cheeks subequal to eyes in width; wings subhyaline, slightly infuscated apically, 2nd recurrent vein reaching 2nd submarginal cell somewhat nearer apex than 1st does to base; tarsal segments simple and unmodified, anterior margin of hind basitarsi without a submedian tubercle; mid and hind spurs piceous; pubescence yellow on head and thorax above, becoming somewhat more whitish on cheeks and on thorax beneath, copious over abdomen, forming rather indistinct, apical fasciae the terga; punctures quite deep and distinct, close in general, crowded on face and clypeus, quite uniformly close over remainder of head and thorax, somewhat finer and distinctly separated on abdominal terga 1-4, becoming somewhat closer at extreme sides, rather shallow and indefinite but close on 5, minute and scattered on shining surface of 6, apical margins of all somewhat depressed, yellowishhyaline, punctures becoming obsolescent; tergum 6 with a small, median, apical emargination, and a shallow and somewhat vague emargination on each extreme side; produced apical area of tergum 7 with a deep, semicircular emargination, acute on each side of this; sternum 2 broadly outcurved apically, covering most of remaining sternal plates, margin of 3 with a broad and deep, triangular, median emargination which is largely filled with elongate setae, converging toward midline (fig. 33); sternum 4 exposed along apical margin, this somewhat thickened and quite deeply grooved (fig. 34), 5-8 entirely retracted, submembraneous; genital armature as shown (fig. 35).

DISTRIBUTION — Minnesota to Nova Scotia, south to Illinois and North Carolina, March to July.

FLOWER RECORDS — Philadeiphus, Salvia, Trifolium and Vicia. Specimens of coerulescens have been reared from cells of an old mud-dauber nest.

Note that this species appears to be associated with urban areas and has decreased greatly and largely disappeared from the southern parts of its range.
Females are so deeply purple that they can appear black. Males are more brassy green and not that dark. Both have very shiny, unmarked propodeal triangles.

Scientific source:

Supported by

Hosts · map
FamilyScientific name @ source (records)
Brassicaceae  Barbarea vulgaris @ CUIC_ENT (1)
Campanulaceae  Campanula rapunculoides @ CUIC_ENT (1)
Convolvulaceae  Convolvulus arvensis @ MLSB__N16- (1)
Fabaceae  Lotus corniculatus @ CUIC_ENT (2); MLSB__N16- (2)

Medicago sativa @ CUIC_ENT (1)

Securigera varia @ MLSB__N16- (2)

Trifolium pratense @ MLSB__N16- (2)

Trifolium repens @ MLSB__N16- (1)
Rosaceae  Rubus sp @ BBSL__BBSLID (1)

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Following modified from Slovenian Museum of Natural History
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Female on a piece of wood, her nesting substrate. Brje pri Komnu, Kras.


Osmia caerulescens (Linnaeus, 1758)



Holarctic species, widely distributed in Slovenia.

Polylectic species, visiting mainly Fabaceae and Lamiaceae. Nests in various pre-existing cavities, e.g. in burrows in wood. The cell partitions are made of masticated leaves.

Bivoltine. The first generation flies from April to July, the second in July and August.


Male on Globularia . Trnje, Pivka, May 2008.

Osmia laticauda – another member of the subgenus Pyrosmia

Razširjenost vrste v Sloveniji.

Zelo razširjena in za zdaj neogrožena vrsta.



Andrej Gogala: Bee fauna of Slovenia

Updated: 2018-07-20 18:48:48 gmt
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