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Xylocopa Latreille
Large Carpenter Bees

Life   Insecta   Hymenoptera   Apoidea   Apidae
Subgenera: Alloxlocopa, Alloxylocopa, Biluna, Bomboixylocopa, Cirroxylocopa, Copoxyla, Ctenoxylocopa, Cyaneoderes, Dasyxylocopa, Diaxylocopa, Gnathoxylocopa, Hoplitocopa, Hoploxylocopa, Koptortosoma, Lestis, Lieftinckella, Maaiana, Maiella, Mesotrichia, Monoxylocopa, Nanoxylocopa, Neoxylocopa, Nodula, Notoxylocopa, Nyctomelitta, Platynopoda, Prosopoxylocopa, Proxylocopa, Rhysoxylocopa, Schonnherria, Stenoxylocopa, Uncertain, Xenoxylocopa, Xylocopa, Xylocopoda, Xylocopoides, Xylocopsis, Xylomelissa, Zonohirsuta

Links
    Extracted from 2017 “Bees of Maryland: A Field Guide” http://bio2.elmira.edu/fieldbio/beesofmarylandbookversion1.pdf

    Familiar to many people for their habit of nesting in the soft woods of houses, benches, decks, and outbuildings, but often confused with Bumble Bees.

    Field Marks: ♀♂Uniformly large, Bumble Bee-like. Face with only dark hairs. Thorax covered in dense off-white hairs. Abdomen, first segment with narrow fringe of pale hairs at the base, rest with sparse, short dark hairs. Abdomen shiny because dark hairs are generally sparse enough that glossy, weakly bluish, integument shows beneath. Face round, equally wide or wider than length. Unique, but difficult to see in the field, the marginal cell is 7X long as wide. Wings dark, but not opaque. ♀Face, between the antennae, has a small, but sometimes noticeable, projecting semicircular mound like the edge of a buried Frisbee. ♂Face, below antennae almost entirely creamy white. Eyes large compared to those of female and most bee species, nearly meeting together at top of head.

    Flight Season: Throughout.

    Size Relative to Honey Bee: 1.5X.

    Position of Wings Feeding on Flowers: Held at 45° to body.

    Location of Pollen Carrying Hairs: Hind femur, tibia, basitarsus.

    Similar Genera: Bombus - Holds wings to it sides or across its back. Abdomen, hairs, except in old individuals, dense, hiding surface, many species; many species have extensive yellow/pale hair beyond the first segments. Face long, longer than wide. Workers smaller than Xylocopa. ♀Hind tibia, wide and bare in center, carry large, noticeable mixed masses of pollen/nectar (rare species are parasitic and look like males), Xylocopa never have large masses of pollen on their legs, pollen usually hidden among hairs. ♂Face entirely black though may have yellow hairs. B. griseocollis/B. auricomus has round face/ large eyes similar to Xylocopa but no white on face. Ptilothrix - Legs much longer. Wings held across back. Overall narrower. Feeds mostly on rosemallow (Hibiscus spp.). Hair on thorax lacks central bare spot of Xylocopa. ♂ No white on face. Anthophora - Smaller. Uncommon. Abdomen often with extensive pale hair. Wings held folded over back. ♀Head, top, flattened, evenly rounded in Xylocopa. ♂Eyes not larger than females and do not nearly meet at top of head. Abdomen, pale hairs more extensive.

    Nest: Excavates short tunnels in soft wood, often in man-made structures.

    Flowers: Uses a variety of large, tall forbs and woody plants.

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Xylocopa tabaniformis
© Copyright Celeste Ets-Hokin 2013 · 15
Xylocopa tabaniformis
Xylocopa virginica, pollinating Passiflora incarnata
© John Pickering, 2004-2019 · 11
Xylocopa virginica, pollinating Passiflora incarnata

Xylocopa virginica m
© Copyright Hadel Go 2014 · 10
Xylocopa virginica m
Xylocopa olivieri
© Copyright Gideon Pisanty 2011 · 9
Xylocopa olivieri

Xylocopa pubescens, female
© Copyright Gideon Pisanty 2011 · 9
Xylocopa pubescens, female
Xylocopa cubaecola, female, face 2012-06-21-16.05.14
© Copyright source/photographer · 9
Xylocopa cubaecola, female, face 2012-06-21-16.05.14

Xylocopa mordax, F, face, Dominican Republic 2012-10-03-16.51
© Copyright source/photographer · 9
Xylocopa mordax, F, face, Dominican Republic 2012-10-03-16.51
Xylocopa virginica, -face 2012-07-16-15.33.23
© Copyright source/photographer · 9
Xylocopa virginica, -face 2012-07-16-15.33.23

Xylocopa virginica, Mid-Atlantic Phenology
© Copyright source/photographer · 9
Xylocopa virginica, Mid-Atlantic Phenology
Xylocopa sonorina, face 2012-06-13-180543
© Copyright source/photographer · 9
Xylocopa sonorina, face 2012-06-13-180543

Xylocopa sonorina, -back 2012-06-13-17.59.26
© Copyright source/photographer · 9
Xylocopa sonorina, -back 2012-06-13-17.59.26
Xylocopa caffra, female PaDIL
Laurence Packer · 9
Xylocopa caffra, female PaDIL

Xylocopa caffra, male PaDIL
Laurence Packer · 9
Xylocopa caffra, male PaDIL
Xylocopa ruficornis, carpenter bee
© Copyright John Ascher, 2006-2014 · 9
Xylocopa ruficornis, carpenter bee
Kinds
Overview

The following material taken with permission from: Mitchell, T.B. 1962. Bees of the Eastern United States, Volume II. North Carolina Agricultural Experiment Station. Tech. Bul. No.152, 557 p.

Xylocopa is a genus of large, robust bees, often confused with bumble-bees by the general public. Commonly they are to some degree metallic in color, the males more conspicuously so, and the face of the males has yellow maculations. The stigma in the front wing is very small, and the marginal cell is very narrow and elongate, the tip bent away from the costal margin. The clypeus is flat, and the rather short mandibles almost completely hide the labrum when closed. In the thorax the menanotum is vertical in position, forming a part of the posterior surface which is nearly at right angles to the dorsal surface. The basitarsi are fully as long as their corresponding tibiae, and the hind pair are well covered with scopal hairs.

These are wood-boring bees, excavating tunnels in soft woods for nesting sites, feeding the larvae on pollen and nectar.

There are only two species, with one subspecies, found in the Eastern United States.


Names
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Updated: 2021-10-25 02:11:36 gmt
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