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Andrenidae Family (Mining Bees)

 

The Andrenidae (the commonfamily name is Mining Bees) are a large, nearly cosmopolitan family of solitary, ground-nesting bees. Most of the family's diversity is located in temperate or arid areas (warm temperate xeric). It includes some enormous genera (e.g., Andrena with over 1300 species, and Perdita with nearly 800).

 

The Andrenidae are typically small to moderate-sized bees, which often have scopae on the basal segments of the leg in addition to the tibia, and are commonly oligolectic (especially within the subfamily Panurginae). They can be separated from other bee families by the presence of two subantennal sutures on the face, a primitive trait shared with the sphecoid wasps. Many groups also have depressions or grooves called "foveae" on the head near the upper margin of the eyes, another feature seen in sphecoids, and also shared by some species of Famiy Colletidae. Andrenids are among the few bee families that have no cleptoparasites. The family contains a very large number of taxa, especially among the Panurginae, whose sting apparatus is so reduced that they are effectively unable to sting.

 

 

Back to Inventory of Bee Families and Species