Notes on the nesting biology of the small carpenter bee Ceratina smaragdula (Hymenoptera: Apidae) in northwestern Pakistan

Authors

  • Hussain Ali Department of Plant Protection, College of Food and Agriculture Sciences, King Saud University, P.O. Box 2460, Riyadh 11451, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
  • Abdulaziz S. Alqarni Department of Plant Protection, College of Food and Agriculture Sciences, King Saud University, P.O. Box 2460, Riyadh 11451, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
  • Mohamed Shebl Department of Plant Protection, College of Food and Agriculture Sciences, King Saud University, P.O. Box 2460, Riyadh 11451, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia Department of Plant Protection, Faculty of Agriculture, Suez Canal University, Ismailia 41522, Egypt
  • Michael S. Engel Division of Entomology, Natural History Museum, and Department of Ecology & Evolutionary Biology, 1501 Crestline Drive – Suite 140, University of Kansas, Lawrence, Kansas 66045-4415, USA Division of Invertebrate Zoology, American Museum of Natural History, Central Park West at 79th Street, New York, New York 10024-5192, USA

Keywords:

Pithitis, nest architecture, nesting biology, foraging, Pakhtunkhwa Province

Abstract

The nesting biology and some foraging activities of the familiar, brilliant metallic green, small carpenter bee Ceratina (Pithitis) smaragdula (F.) (Hymenoptera: Apidae) is documented from the northwestern-most extent of its natural distribution, as the species is a potentially important pollinator of leguminous and cucurbit crops in the region. Numerous nests around the village of Ismaila, Swabi, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Province, Pakistan, were observed and sampled from Jun through Aug 2012. Nest details were recorded and foraging times on various floral species were documented, with bees preferentially nesting in wooden stalks of Ravenna grass (Saccharum ravennae L.; Poales: Poaceae), life cycles lasting 28 to 32 d, and conditions offering the potential for easy management. The importance of such studies on wild bees in Pakistan is stressed, as are the development of biotic surveys on bees and the training of regional melittologists, coupled with outreach activities.

 

Resumen

 

La biología de la anidación y algunas actividades de forrajeo de la pequeña abeja carpintera Ceratina (Pithitis) smaragdula (F.) (Hymenoptera: Apidae) de tipo familiar y brillante color verde metálico está documentado desde el punto mas noroeste de su distribución natural, ya que la especie es potencialmente un importante polinizador de legumbres y cucurbitáceas en la región. Se observaron numerosos nidos alrededor del pueblo de Ismaila, Swabi, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Provincia, Pakistán, y se tomaron muestras desde junio hasta agosto del 2012. Los detalles de la anidación fueron registrados y se documentaron los tiempos de forrajeo sobre diversas especies florales, con las abejas preferentemente anidando en los tallos de madera de pasto de Rávena (Saccharum ravennae L.; Poales: Poaceae), los ciclos de vida duran de 28 a 32 dias, y las condiciones que ofrecen el potencial para un fácil manejo. Se destaca la importancia de este tipo de estudio sobre las abejas silvestres en Pakistán, igual que el desarrollo de sondeos bióticos sobre las abejas y la formación de melitólogos regionales, junto con actividades de extensión.

 

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Published

2015-12-30

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Section

Research Papers