Hylaeus in Hawaii

Hylaeus fuscipennis

Islands: Oahu, Molokai, Lanai, Maui

Locations: Molokai - (Kamakou Rd., Puu Kolekole, E. Kawela Gulch)
Lanai - (Kaiholena Ridge, Munro Trail)
Maui - (Haelaau Cabin, Kahoma, Kaulalewelewe, PKW fence, Puu Kukui Rd.)

Habitats: Montane wet and mesic forest

Plants: Acacia, Cheirodendron, Metrosideros, Psychotria, Tetraplasandra

Xerces: No info.

Insects of Hawaii: Large bees with punctured terga, dark wings, and dark faces. Males with yellowish stripe on scape; both sexes with a complete or nearly complete transverse stripe on the pronotal collar, and no hump on second sternum as seen in lateral view. Sister species of H. pubescens, which has a hump on S2 and much more, redder hair on the apex ofthe metasoma.

Perkins (1899:107) described H. caeruleipennis from Molokai and Lanai as structurally similar to H. fuscipennis from Oahu, but differing in having blue iridescent wings and dark tarsi. He also distinguished H. fuscipennis variety obscuripes from West Maui by violet iridescent wings and dark tarsi, noting that some from Oahu are similar whereas others lack the iridescence. Cockerell (1926) later named two males and a female from Mt. Tantalus with the antennae ferruginous beneath and the tarsi dark as a new mutation, H. fuscipennis swezeyi. The populations on Oahu, Molokai, Lanai, and Maui are structurally similar and are considered here to be one species under the senior name, H. fuscipennis, with variation in the color of wing iridescence, extent of ivory markings, and degree of cuticular melanization. Iridescent colors are still visible on bees collected by Perkins. The distal margins of the wings of bees from all islands may exhibit faint bands of red and green. Recently collected bees from Molokai and Lanai may have the distal margins blue and the center of the wing with magenta reflections, especially the underside. Bees from Oahu and Maui may lack color reflections or have magenta or violet reflections, just as described by Perkins. Variation in wing color in the same population of the sister species, H. pubescens, was noted by Perkins in his key (1910:604). Hylaeus pubescens of Hawaii is the sister taxon to H. fuscipennis of Oahu and Maui Nui. Both sexes of both species have the propodeum similar in shape and sculpture. Males have a similar scape in frontal view with a broad, obtuse angle along the lateral edge and the median process of S8 strongly dilated. The second sternum of both sexes of H. fuscipennis, seen in lateral view, are evenly convex but without a distinct hump. Hylaeus pubescens is distinguished by the second sternum with an angular protuberance at midlength. The protuberance may be slight or well developed, especially in females.
Insects of Hawaii Volume 17PDF

Hylaeus near military landsPDF


 Flickr Images of H. fuscipennis

 Google Search for H. fuscipennis

Images and information mostly from various works by Karl Magnacca.
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