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Volume 30, Number 4, 1999
Page(s) 327 - 338
Apidologie 30 (1999) 327-338
DOI: 10.1051/apido:19990409

Nesting biology of Centris (Hemisiella) vittata Lepeletier in southeastern Brazil (Hymenoptera, Apidae, Centridini)

Márcio Pereira, Carlos Alberto Garófalo, Evandro Camillo and José Carlos Serrano

Departamento de Biologia, Faculdade de Filosofia, Ciências e Letras de Ribeirão Preto - USP, 14040-901, Ribeirão Preto, São Paulo, Brazil

Abstract - Nests of Centris vittata were obtained from trap-nests at Santa Carlota Farm, Cajuru, SP, Brazil. The bees nested in bamboo canes ranging from 8.5 to 24.7 cm in length and from 0.9 to 1.9 cm in diameter. The bees constructed their nests with a mixture of soil and an oily substance. Completed nests had 1-8 urn-shaped cells arranged in a linear series, separated by a space filled with loose soil. The nest plugs resembled the bottoms of cells and were externally covered with an oily material. In some cases they were also covered with an another yellowish, sticky substance of unknown origin. The innermost cells of the nests produced females and the outermost cells males, resulting in proterandry. Females were significantly larger than males, and no dimorphism in males was found. Nests were parasitized by the megachilid bee, Coelioxys sp., the bombyliid fly, Anthrax sp. and by meloid beetles. C. vittata nested exclusively in the hot and wet season (September-April), producing at least two generations. © Inra/DIB/AGIB/Elsevier, Paris

Key words: nesting biology / trap-nest / Centris vittata / Apidae / Brazil