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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: BEE DIVERSITY AND THE DEVELOPMENT OF HEALTHY, SUSTAINABLE BEE POLLINATION SYSTEMS

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Title: Hidden species complexes within distinctive taxa: the case of Epanthidium bicoloratum (Smith) (Hymenoptera: Megachilidae))

Author
item Griswold, Terry
item Gonzalez, Victor

Submitted to: Revista Brasileira de Entomologia
Publication Type: Peer reviewed journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 3/19/2013
Publication Date: 10/10/2015
Citation: Griswold, T.L., Gonzalez, V. 2015. Hidden species complexes within distinctive taxa: the case of Epanthidium bicoloratum (Smith) (Hymenoptera: Megachilidae). Revista Brasileira de Entomologia. 245-266.

Interpretive Summary: When an animal has a unique shape, color, or body sculpturing scientists are unlikely to look at it more carefully to see whether it is in fact a complex of species. Such is the case for Epanthidium bicoloratum, a bee that has a wedge shaped cap covering the wing base. No other bee in the Americas has such a cap. Closer examination of this apparently unique bee showed that it is actually a species complex of four species. We describe the three other new species and provide a key to distinguish the species in the complex.

Technical Abstract: Epanthidium bicoloratum (Smith) differs from all other Neotropical Anthidiini in the distinctive tegula, which is narrowed posteriorly forming a slender wedge. Examination of material standing under this name revealed that it represents a species complex that includes three new cryptic species, E. cuneiforme n. sp., E. danunciae n. sp., and E. nigrifacies n. sp., here described and figured. A key to the species of this group is provided.

Last Modified: 8/24/2016
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