Monday, March 17, 2014

NEON CUCKOO BEE

CLASS: Insecta;  ORDER: Hymenoptera;  FAMILY: Apidae;  GENUS:  Thyreus; 
SPECIES: nitidulus;  COMMON NAME:  Neon Cuckoo Bee

This is a black bee with metallic blue spots on the back and sides.  They are called cuckoo bees as they lay their eggs in the burrows of other bees.


They will lay their eggs in the burrows of blue-banded bees or Teddy Bear bees (members of the Amegilla genus).  When the Cuckoo Bee egg hatches it feeds on the Amegilla bee egg or larvae.

A relative of the Cuckoo bee is the Thyreus caeruleopunctatus.  It has light blue patches on the back and sides.  Otherwise its description is the same as for the Thyreus nitidulus.


I do quite often see solitary little blue bees in our garden and now wonder if it is one of the above.

11 comments:

  1. Great post Mimsie! I enjoyed learning about this little beetle. Thank you!

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    1. Thanks Denise....he's a handsome little chap/girl.

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  2. Replies
    1. Don't apologise....I knew what you intended.

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  3. Hari OM
    What a little gem!! Don't recall seeing these, though of course lots of different ones at other times and places... YAM xx

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    1. They are very tiny but we often spot them in our garden. Very pretty. xx

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  4. I don't think I have ever seen this stunner (or its close cousin). Thank you.

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    1. They are really tiny EC but we see one or two in our garden from time to time and you are very welcome.

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  5. Replies
    1. Real little cuties aren't they? x

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  6. I've never seen a blue bee, I'll have to keep my eyes open next spring.

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