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ARS Home » Pacific West Area » Logan, Utah » Pollinating Insect-Biology, Management, Systematics Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #310291

Research Project: Managing and Conserving Diverse Bee Pollinators for Sustainable Crop Production and Wildland Preservation

Location: Pollinating Insect-Biology, Management, Systematics Research

Title: First record of the orchid bee genus Eufriesea Cockerell (Hymenoptera: Apidae: Euglossini) in the United States

Author
item Griswold, Terry
item Herndon, James - Us National Park Service
item Gonzalez, Victor - University Of Kansas

Submitted to: Zootaxa
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 4/17/2015
Publication Date: 5/15/2015
Citation: Griswold, T.L., Herndon, J.D., Gonzalez, V.H. 2015. First record of the orchid bee genus Eufriesea Cockerell (Hymenoptera: Apidae: Euglossini) in the United States. Zootaxa. 3957:342-346.

Interpretive Summary: Orchid bees are large bees that usually have brilliant metallic coloration. They are found exclusively in the Western Hemisphere where they are a colorful element in tropical environments. They have not previously been found as native residents in the USA. Two collections of a new species of orchid bee, Eufriesea aenigma Griswold and Herndon, from the Guadalupe Mountains of western Texas and southeastern New Mexico, USA call into question whether this bee genus is exclusively tropical. It is possible that they were transported by a storm from some unknown tropical location. If so, then the location is unknown; Eufriesea aenigma does not match any known species from anywhere in the tropical Americas. If this bee is resident in the Guadalupe Mountains, then our understanding of the biological limits of this genus have to be expanded.

Technical Abstract: A new species of orchid bee, Eufriesea aenigma Griswold and Herndon, is described from the Guadalupe Mountains of western Texas and southeastern New Mexico, USA. This is the first record for Eufriesea from the USA and extends its apparent range well beyond its previous, entirely tropical boundaries. Whether E. aenigma is resident in the USA, or merely a vagrant, remains unclear.