Nomada vicina

Cuckoo Bee
Nomada vicina

Identification:

Cuckoo Bee Nomada vicina female on Goldenrod. Sep 01, 2006 Wheatley, Ontario.
Cuckoo Bee Nomada vicina female on Goldenrod. Sep 01, 2006 Wheatley, Ontario.

Both male and female:
Head: Black with a few short, white hairs. Eyes bordered with reddish-brown line. Mandibles dark, toothless.
Top of mouth area (clypeus) has thin red line. Cheeks slightly narrower than eye width. Male has yellowish hair on lower face.
Antenna: Base (scape), pedicel and 1st segment more yellowish-brow, but not red. Rest of antenna dark brown. Underside brownish-yellow. Male has underside of base yellow.
Thorax: Dark brown with some reddish-brown streaks. Segment 2 (scutellum) raised knobs may be slightly reddish. Bottom end of thorax has tiny yellowish to whitish mark at each side; dense white hair on male. Thorax side have a few short, white hairs, more so on male.
Wings: Wing knobs (tegulae) shiny, reddish brown. Wings darkly tinted, light spot near tips. Veins dark. Male wings have lighter tint.
Legs: Female legs reddish brown; dark streaks on thighs (femora). Male legs brownish-yellow with darker streaks; tips lighter.

Cuckoo Bee Nomada vicina female on Goldenrod. Sep 01, 2006 Wheatley, Ontario.
Cuckoo Bee Nomada vicina female on Goldenrod. Sep 01, 2006 Wheatley, Ontario.

Abdomen: Segments dark with bright yellow marks. Stripes on 3 to 5 about the same width.
Segment 1: Very narrow, wavy line, slightly interrupted at center.
Segment 2: Very wide stripe, notched at top, very slightly interrupted at center.
Segment 3: Narrow stripe, widely interrupted at center.
Segment 4: Narrow stripe, notched on lower border, barely interrupted at center.
Segment 5: Narrow stripe, notched on lower border, continuous.
Segment 6: Male only – same as segment 5.
Female tip squarish with tuft of dark hair; male tip wide, notched.
Underside of segments 2 to 4 with some yellow marks.

Similar Species: Females of Nomada banksi have an entirely red scape and base antenna segments, and while the scutellum also has red, it is more deeply grooved than in Nomada vicina.
Males of Nomada banksi have the clypeus is entirely bright yellow, and the scutellum either is entirely black or has a pair of small yellow spots. The marks on abdomen are superficially similar in the two, although minor differences are evident.

Size: Female 9 mm. Male 7 to 10 mm.

Habitat: Sandy meadows, forest edges.

Food: Goldenrod

Flight Time: August to September.

Life Cycle: Parasite of Mining Bees Andrena vicina per Hurd, 1979 and Andrena hirticincta.

Comments: Essex County – Ojibway Prairies species list, 2008. Kent County – Komoka Feed Mill. Peel and Durham Counties. Also in southern Michigan (Livingston County).

For information on synonyms, references and type specimens see next page

Nomada maculata

Cuckoo Bee
Nomada maculata

Identification:

Cuckoo Bee Nomada maculata female on Dewberry. June 02, 2010 Wheatley, Ontario.
Cuckoo Bee Nomada maculata female on Dewberry. June 02, 2010 Wheatley, Ontario.

Female:
Head: Head reddish-brown. Black at base of antenna and on top of head. Cheeks slightly narrower than eyes, hind margin black. Mandibles toothed, tips black.
Antenna: Base (scape) reddish-brown. Segments more brownish. All segments longer than wide.
Thorax: Thorax reddish-brown. Segment 1 (scutum) has a narrow black middle line. Segment 2 (scutellum) shallowly indented at centre. Segment 3 (propodeum) reddish with dense silvery-white hairs on each side. Some black on thorax side, below wing base.  Hair pale, short on thorax sides.
Wings: Wing knobs (tegulae) brownish-yellow. Wings sub-hyaline, narrowly tinted along outer margin and in marginal cell. Three submarginal cells, the 2nd very broad anteriorily nearly squared, 3rd narrowed nearly to a point. Veins dark.

Cuckoo Bee Nomada maculata female on Sumac flowers. June 08, 2010 Wheatley, Ontario.
Cuckoo Bee Nomada maculata female on Sumac flowers. June 08, 2010 Wheatley, Ontario.

Legs: Entirely reddish-brown. Thighs (femora) bases black on underside.
Abdomen: Segments shiny; each segment is rusty reddish-brown, lower half darker. Lower border becoming more yellowish-hyaline.
Segment 1 base black, or may have faint small yellow spot on each side.
Segments 2 and 3 have medium to small spots on each side, extremely wide interrupt at centre.
Segment 4 band much inset from side edges and interrupted at centre, or may be absent.
Segment 5 with a pair of large, distinct yellow spots at centre.
Tip very wide and short, covered with silvery hairs, squarish at tip.
Underside entirely reddish-brown.

Male: darker

Cuckoo Bee Nomada maculata male on Peach-leaf Willow. Apr 25, 2009 Wheatley, Ontario.
Cuckoo Bee Nomada maculata male on Peach-leaf Willow. Apr 25, 2009 Wheatley, Ontario.

Head: Head black with short white hairs. Lower face bright yellow, hairy, with yellow extending up inner eye margin to antenna bases, and a small yellow mark at top of each eye, sometimes. Mandibles toothed, bright yellow, tips dark. Cheeks as wide as eye width.
Antenna: Base or scape brown on top, light red-brown on underside, no yellow. About first 5 segments dark, rest lighter reddish, underside of all segments light red-brown, same colour as base underside. Segments all the same size, longer than wide.
Thorax: Black covered with long pale hairs, and sometime streaked with reddish. Collar reddish-yellow. Segment 2 (scutellum) rounded, projecting knobs reddish-brown, only slightly indented. Segment 3 (propodeum or metanotum) entirely reddish-brown. Thorax side under wing knob rusty reddish brown. Tubercles (pronotal lobes) more brownish-yellow.

Cuckoo Bee Nomada maculata male on Fleabane. June 09, 2014 Wheatley, Ontario.
Cuckoo Bee Nomada maculata male on Fleabane. June 09, 2014 Wheatley, Ontario.

Wings: Wing knobs (tegulae) shiny, brownish-yellow. Wings sub-hyaline, rather narrowly and lightly tinted along outer edge and around marginal cell. Veins dark.
Legs: Legs brownish-yellow to reddish-brown. Thighs (femora) bases black on underside, hind thigh black on top side, tip light. Underside of legs hairy.
Abdomen: Each segment reddish, with yellow bands, lower rim blackish. Line of hairs on lower

Cuckoo Bee Nomada maculata male on Peach-leaf Willow. Apr 23, 2008 Wheatley, Ontario.
Cuckoo Bee Nomada maculata male on Peach-leaf Willow. Apr 23, 2008 Wheatley, Ontario.

margin on segments 3 to 6 at side edges.
Segment 1 is black at extreme base, and with a pair of rather small, yellow spots each side of centre.
Segment 2 & 3  have wide bands, narrowing and rounded with a small interrupt at centre.
Segments 4 and 5 with even narrower vague yellow bands which are partly interrupted at centre.
Segment 6 with a vague yellow band on mid segment, base of segment is black.
Tip narrowed and down-turned, fringed on each side with dense white tufts.

Cuckoo Bee Nomada maculata male flying off Fleabane. June 09, 2014 Wheatley, Ontario.
Cuckoo Bee Nomada maculata male flying off Fleabane. June 09, 2014 Wheatley, Ontario.

Underside reddish-brown, with black line on lower rims.

Size: Female 11 mm. Male 8.5 to 10 mm

Habitat: Forest edges and meadows.

Food: Adults eat nectar from many flowers.

Flight Time: Mid April to June ( males to May)

Life Cycle: Parasitic on Andrena vicina.

Comments: Essex County – Lake Erie Island and Ojibway species list, 2008. Peel County and S. Michigan.

For information on synonyms, references and type specimens see next page

Nomada articulata

Cuckoo Bee
Nomada articulata

Identification: Female entirely red, without yellow marks. Male antenna unique colour combination: dark, light, dark, tip light.
Female:
Head: Dark red with short silvery-white hair. Top of head has a dark spot extending down to the base of the antenna. Mandibles toothless. Cheeks half as wide as eye width.
Antenna: Base (scape) bright dark red, underside blackish. Segments dark rusty red to brown-black, lighter on underside.  All segments the same size.
Thorax: Dark red. Collar dark red, with black at each side edge. Segment 1 (scutum) has a faint black median line. Segment 2 (scutellum) has slightly projecting knobs light rusty red. Segment 3 (propodeum) mostly black, sides with dense silvery-white hair. Thorax front half dark red, rest  black; covered with silvery-white hair. Tubercles reddish-yellow.
Wings: Wing knobs (tegulae) reddish-yellow. Wings slightly tinted, clear spot before tips. Tips dark.
Legs: Brownish-yellow with blackish streaks, more so on underside.
Abdomen: Bright dark red, smooth and shiny. Segment 1 black at base. No other marks on abdomen. Tip very short with tufts of silver hair.

Similar Species: Female is same bright dark red  as female Nomada pygmaea, but without yellow spots on abdomen. Females fly low to the ground and are never still. Almost impossible to photograph.

Male:

Cuckoo Bee Nomada articulata male sleeping for the night on Ox-eye Daisy. May 30, 2009 Wheatley, Ontario.
Cuckoo Bee Nomada articulata male sleeping for the night on Ox-eye Daisy. May 30, 2009 Wheatley, Ontario.
Cuckoo Bee Nomada articulata male on Ox-eye Daisy. May 30, 2008 Wheatley, Ontario.
Cuckoo Bee Nomada articulata male on Ox-eye Daisy. May 30, 2008 Wheatley, Ontario.
Cuckoo Bee Nomada articulata male on Chives flower. June 06, 2007 Wheatley, Ontario.
Cuckoo Bee Nomada articulata male on Chives flower. June 06, 2007 Wheatley, Ontario.
Cuckoo Bee Nomada articulata male on Ox-eye Daisy. June 04, 2007 Wheatley, Ontario.
Cuckoo Bee Nomada articulata male on Ox-eye Daisy. June 04, 2007 Wheatley, Ontario.
Cuckoo Bee Nomada articulata male on Astilbe. June 07, 2015 Leamington, Ontario.
Cuckoo Bee Nomada articulata male on Astilbe. June 07, 2015 Leamington, Ontario.

Head: Upper face black. Lower face light yellow, including mandibles (tips dark), without teeth. Yellow continues up inner eye margin to just above antenna bases. Cheeks black, as wide as eye width.
Antenna: Base (scape) swollen, dark on top side, yellow on underside. Segment colors unique: 1 to 3 or 4 dark, segments 3 or 4 to 7 light, segments 8 to 10 dark, tips light. Underside of antenna light brownish-yellow.
Thorax: Dark rusty brown. Collar with narrow yellow stripe. Segment 1 (scutum) dark rusty brown. Segment 2 (scutellum) has brighter rusty red, slightly raised knobs. Segment 3 (propodeum) has silvery hair at side edges. Thorax side darker to blackish, covered with silvery hair. Tubercles are light rusty red. Another small yellowish spot and 2nd small yellow spot side by side near hind leg joint are barely visible.
Wings: Wing knobs (tegulae) light rusty red. Wings tinted, clear spot before tips, veins light rusty red.
Legs: Base of thighs (femora) and trochanters dark, covered with silvery hairs. Front and middle leg light rusty red, hind leg darker. All shins (tibiae) have yellowish-brown pile. Hind thigh curved.
Abdomen: Rusty red, with varying amounts of black, usually at very base or end of segments.
Segment 1 medium to tiny yellow spot on each side.
Segment 2 large oval patch on each side, with a pointed area toward centre.
Segments 3 to 6, yellow stripes across segment; segment 3 interrupted or not at centre.
Tip rusty red, slightly bi-lobed.
Underside entirely rusty red, light-colored hairs on segments 4 to end.

Size: Female 8.5 mm. Male 8.5 to 9.5 mm

Habitat: Forest edges and meadows.

Food: Flower nectar such as Dewberry and Black-eyed-Susan.

Flight Time: May and June in Essex County. April to August in Ontario.

Life Cycle: A cleptoparasite of Metallic Green Bees Agapostemon virescens, A. sericeus and Mining Bee Andrena alleghaniensis.
“The female cuckoo bees normally visit the Agapostemon nesting area once or twice during the time of day that they are active, staying for between 14 and 45 minutes and making repeated attempts to enter host burrows. They fly around the burrow area a few centimetres above the ground and alight on a suitable perch a short distance from a nest entrance. For anything between 5 seconds and 10 minutes, they sit facing the burrow entrance, with their antennae directed towards it, before they make any attempt to enter. Of attempts to enter the nest burrow, 50% are made after the host has left on a foraging trip; otherwise they are made just after the host has entered the burrow or when there is no visible activity at the nest entrance. At no time do N. articulata females attempt to enter when the host is at the nest entrance. Having decided to investigate a burrow, the female cuckoo bee advances towards it with her wings vibrating. At the burrow entrance, she stops and then inserts her antennae into it for 1 to 2 seconds, her wings still vibrating. The wing-vibrating then ceases and she walks into the burrow to lay her eggs.” per Rod Preston-Mafham, Encyclopedia of Land Invertebrate Behavior, 1993, pg. 154.

Comments: Essex County per photos– not on any list. Kent County – Rondeau Provincial Park species list.  Toronto, Peel County, Niagara, Long Point. Also in Southern Michigan (Livingston County).

For information on synonyms, references and type specimens see next page

Nomada fervida

Cuckoo Bee
Nomada fervida

Cuckoo Bee Nomada fervida male
Cuckoo Bee Nomada fervida male on False Indigo at Point Pelee National Park, Leamington, Ontario Jun 16, 2015.

Identification: Entirely black to brownish with yellow scutellum. Female has 2 yellow abdominal stripes. Male has additional broken yellow lines on other segments.
Head: Black with yellow marks. Yellow mark on upper hind eye margin. Tear-drop shaped mark starting just above antenna bases, widening at lower face (clypeus). Clypeus black on female, yellow on male. Cheeks narrow, less than half width of eye. Mandibles yellow, tips dark.
Antenna: Base (scape) and pedicel yellowish-brown. Segments brownish-black.
Thorax: Brownish. Collar stripe bright yellow. Segment 1 (scutum) black with a yellow mark near wing base. Segment 2 (scutellum) raised area bright yellow with reddish between knobs. Yellow line on lower border. Segment 3 (propodeum) entirely black; male has plume of whitish hair down each side. Thorax sides black with bright yellow tubercle (pronotal lobe) and large yellow central spot; some long whitish hairs.
Wings: Wing knobs (tegulae) shiny, bright yellow. Wings tinted quite dark. Veins dark.
Legs: Legs reddish. Female has long hairs on hind shin (tibiae). Male hind thighs (femora) dark, tips light. Hind shin reddish with yellow streaks and spots.
Abdomen: Brown to black with yellow stripes.
Segment 1: Thin, wavy stripe in center of segment on female; straight across on male.
Segment 2: Wide stripe, narrowing at center.
No other marks on female.
Segments 3 to 5 Male: Thin line of 4 dashes on each segment, sometimes faded or missing.
Segment 6 Male: Black. Underside entirely black with extremely short yellowish hairs. Tip square. Male tip has 2 lobes.

Size: Female 10 mm; Male 7 to 8 mm.

Habitat: Deep, loose sand in prairies and along shorelines.

Food: Adults feed on flower nectar.

Flight Time: July in Ontario.

Life Cycle: Parasitic on Metallic Green Bees Agapostemon. Specifically recorded with Agapostemon splendens.

Comments: Essex County – Point Pelee National Park.
Kent County – Rondeau Provincial Park.
Lambton County – Pinery Provincial Park.
Bruce County – Inverhuron Provincial Park.

For information on synonyms, references and type specimens see next page

Nomada luteoloides

Cuckoo Bee
Nomada luteoloides

Cuckoo Bee Nomada luteoloides female
Cuckoo Bee Nomada luteoloides female on Ox-eye Daisy June 06, 2008, Wheatley, Ontario
Cuckoo Bee Nomada luteoloides male
Cuckoo Bee Nomada luteoloides male on dandelion Apr 29, 2007 Kingsville, Ontario
Cuckoo Bee Nomada luteoloides male
Cuckoo Bee Nomada luteoloides male on dandelion Apr 29, 2007 Kingsville, Ontario
Cuckoo Bee Nomada luteoloides female
Cuckoo Bee Nomada luteoloides female on Honeysuckle May 28, 2011 Wheatley, Ontario
Cuckoo Bee Nomada luteoloides female
Cuckoo Bee Nomada luteoloides female on Honeysuckle May 28, 2011 Wheatley, Ontario


Female:
Head: Black with sparse pale hair. Lower face (clypeus) yellowish. Wide yellow band almost completely surrounds eye margin. Cheeks almost as wide as eye width. Mandibles without teeth.
Antenna: Base (scape) reddish-brown, underside brownish-yellow. Segments dark; reddish-brown on underside.
Thorax: Black, with a thin yellow line on edge above wing base. Collar bright yellow. Segment 2 (scutellum) has two large bright yellow knobs and a yellow line below. Segment 3 (propodeum) has large yellow side patches. Thorax sides have a very large yellow patch below 1 or 2 small spots. Tubercles (pronotal lobes) bright yellow. Underside of thorax dark.
Wings: Wing knobs (tegula) bright yellow. Wings tinted reddish, tips slightly darker. Veins reddish yellow.
Legs: Thighs (femora) largely reddish with wide yellow tips; may have black streaks. Shins (tibiae) yellow with reddish-brown streaks. Feet light brown.
Abdomen: Reddish-brown with wide, bright yellow stripes; all except first stripe entire across segments. Segment 2 has the widest stripe. Abdomen tip wide, square. Underside of 2 to 6 are yellow, margins reddish. Underside of segment 5 has a dense tuft of long, curved, brownish hairs which meet at center, and segment also covered with silvery hair.

Male:
Head: Black with short, pale yellowish hair over entire head. Lower face (clypeus) yellow. Eye margins have yellow border almost complete. Cheeks narrower than eye width. Mandibles quite slender, no teeth.
Antenna: Base (scape) dark on top side, bright yellow and enlarged on underside. Segments dark on top side, brownish-yellow on underside. Segment 1 shorter than 2. Rest slightly longer than wide. Segment 3 without spines, but 7 to 10 with spines (denticles).
Thorax: Black with short, pale yellowish hair. Segment 1 (scutum) without marks. Segment 2 (scutellum) has two very small yellow knobs, may be absent. Segment 3 (propodeum) has each side fringed with light hair. Thorax sides have bright yellow tubercle (pronotal lobe) with a mark below. Underside densely covered with light hair.
Wings: Wing knobs (tegulae) bright yellow. Wings slightly tinted, tips darker. Veins brownish.
Legs: Thighs (femora) black with wide yellow tips; underside fringed with dense white hair. Shins (tibiae) bright yellow with faint brownish-red patches. Feet yellow, hind foot 1st segment brown, rest orange-brown.
Abdomen: Black with bright yellow stripes all entire across segments, except the first. Segment 2 widest. Segment 3 and 4 stripes are narrower than the dark area below the stripe. Underside of abdomen mostly yellow. Tip as wide as long, notched with dense erect hair.

Similar Species: N. imbricata has wide reddish lower margins on abdomen.

Size: Female 9.5 to 12 mm Male 8.5 to 11.5 mm

Habitat: Forest edges.

Food: Wild Strawberry and other spring flowers. Larvae feed on food stored by Mining Bees Andrena.

Flight Time: April to June

Life Cycle: Females steal into Mining Bee Andrena nests to lay their eggs.

Comments: Essex County – photos. Peel County – per photos. Also in Southern Michigan – Livingston County.

For yada-yada on synonyms, references and type specimens see next page

Nomada armatella

Cuckoo Bee
Nomada armatella

Cuckoo Bee Nomada armatella female
Cuckoo Bee Nomada armatella female on Ox-eye Daisy June 03, 2008 Wheatley, Ontario
Cuckoo Bee Nomada armatella male
Cuckoo Bee Nomada armatella male on Ox-eye Daisy June 06, 2014 Wheatley, Ontario
Cuckoo Bee Nomada armatella female
Cuckoo Bee Nomada armatella female on Ox-eye Daisy June 03, 2008 Wheatley, Ontario
Cuckoo Bee Nomada armatella female
Cuckoo Bee Nomada armatella female on Ox-eye Daisy June 03, 2008 Wheatley, Ontario
Cuckoo Bee Nomada armatella male
Cuckoo Bee Nomada armatella male on Ox-eye Daisy June 06, 2014 Wheatley, Ontario
Cuckoo Bee Nomada armatella male
Cuckoo Bee Nomada armatella male on Ox-eye Daisy June 06, 2014 Wheatley, Ontario

Identification: Only the male is described in entomology journals

Female:
Head: Light reddish-brown with pale to whitish hair. No yellow marks, except faint yellowish stripe at back of eye, reaching only to mid eye. Mandibles without teeth. Black patch between and above antenna and around simple eyes (ocelli).
Antenna: Base (scape) and antenna reddish-brown.
Thorax: Light reddish-brown. Collar thin, yellow, may have slight break at center. Segment 1 (scutum) has faint black median stripe, indented. Segment 2 (scutellum) raised, bright yellow. Segment 3 (propodeum) dark with a pair of large yellow, longitudinal patches and white fringe on each side edge. Thorax sides entirely light reddish-brown sprinkled with short, whitish hair. Tubercle (pronotal lobe) bright yellow.
Wings: Wing knobs (tegulae) reddish-brown. Wings tinted brownish, clear spot just before wing tip. Thin line along costal border and small stigma darker reddish-brown.
Legs: Reddish, faintly lighter at tips of segments. Mid and hind coxae have silvery-white hair. Shins (tibiae) covered with short white pile. Feet slight darker. Hind shin tip has white hairs on underside.
Abdomen: Light reddish-brown with bright yellow stripes.
Segment 1 base dark; stripe indented and interrupted at center.
Segment 2 large stripe, indented at center.
Segments 3 to 5 stripes narrower and entire across segments.
Tip yellow, bi-lobed similar to male but shorter and wider.

Male:
Head: Dark brown to black with long, thick silvery hair. Lower face (clypeus) yellow, yellow continuing up inner eye margin past antenna bases. Cheeks as wide as eye width. Mandibles thin, toothless, yellow with reddish tips.
Antenna: Base (scape) slightly swollen, reddish on top side and yellow on underside. Segments reddish, slightly darker on basal segments. Underside of segments brownish-yellow. Segment 1 very short.
Thorax: Dark brown to black, with long, pale hair. Light yellow collar stripe very short and thin, hardly visible. Segment 1 (scutum) dark brown to black; no other marks. Segment 2 (scutellum) has two raised yellow spots, surrounded with faint reddish-brown. Segment 3 (propodeum) black, sparsely covered with white hairs, more dense along each side edge. Thorax sides slightly darker than top; under wing base a tiny rusty reddish-yellow mark. Tubercles (pronotal lobes) pale yellow. Lower thorax covered with thick white hair. Underside has thick dense whitish hair, obscuring surface.
Wings: Wing knobs (tegulae) yellowish-brown. Wings darkly tinted, base and spot before wing tips clear. 2nd submarginal cell wider than 3rd on top edge. Veins brownish.
Legs: Thighs (femora) dark reddish-brown, tips lighter; underside black. Hind thigh slender. Shins reddish-yellow, tips lighter. Front and middle feet (tarsi) yellow. Hind foot darker.
Abdomen: Reddish-brown, all segments with yellow stripes very slightly interrupted at center by a red line.
Segment 1 base is black, in middle is a narrow, rippled stripe.
Segments 2 to 4 mostly yellow. Segment 2 stripe very large and may be notched along lower border.
Segment 5 stripe notched and narrowed along lower margin, barely reaches side of segment edge.
Segment 6 stripe is short, more at center of segment than sides.
Underside of abdomen is very dark reddish-brown, very fine pale hairs and tip deeply notched, narrow, yellowish and very hairy.

Size: Female 9 to 11 mm long. Male 8 to 10 mm long.

Habitat: Forests where there are Andrena Mining bees.

Food: Adults eat nectar. Larvae are parasites on Mining Bees Andrena

Flight Time: May to August.

Life Cycle: Parasitic on Mining Bee Andrena vicina, and possibly Metallic Green Bees Agapostemon.

Comments: Essex County (my photos). Ontario – Williamsburg (near Cornwall) per Barcode of life data systems (BOLD). Also in Michigan – Livingston County.

For information on synonyms, references and type specimens see next page

Triepeolus simplex

Cuckoo Bee
Triepeolus simplex

Cuckoo Bee Triepeolus simplex female
Cuckoo Bee Triepeolus simplex female on Virginia Mountain Mint Aug 13, 2013 Wheatley, Ontario.
Cuckoo Bee Triepeolus simplex female
Cuckoo Bee Triepeolus simplex female on Oregano July 29, 2009 Wheatley, Ontario.
Cuckoo Bee Triepeolus simplex female
Cuckoo Bee Triepeolus simplex female on Oregano July 29, 2009 Wheatley, Ontario.
Cuckoo Bee Triepeolus simplex female
Cuckoo Bee Triepeolus simplex female on Virginia Mountain Mint Aug 13, 2013 Wheatley, Ontario.

Identification: Black area on abdominal segment 1 is small, sub-triangular. Stripes medium yellow, fading to white on last few abdominal segments. Median lines on thorax touch collar. Female abdomen tip mostly bare.
Head: Black with yellowish hairs around antenna bases on female. Male face covered with yellow hair. Lower face (clypeus) has no center longitudinal ridge.
Antenna: Black; base (scape) and segment 1 may have some reddish-brown to orange.
Thorax: Black with thin, intermittent yellow lines around all segments. Collar has thick yellowish pile. Segment 1 (scutum) has two yellow median stripes, one on each side of an indented center line. These stripes touch the collar (lines widen on male). Segment 2 (scutellum) has long slender tooth (axillae) at each side edge. Segment 3 (propodeum) has line of hairs along outside edges. Thorax side has dark tubercle with yellow fringe. Under tubercle is another crescent or lunate mark. Tufts of hair behind and below wing bases. No yellow hair on underside.
Wings: Wings evenly tinted; not darker at tips. Veins dark.
Legs: Thighs (femora) dark, tips light. Shins (tibiae) and feet reddish-brown, infused with dark streaks. Spurs dark. Underside of legs may have yellowish pile.
Abdomen: Black with yellow stripes, colorr fades on last few segments.
Segment 1 has two stripes; the side thickly joined together. Centre black area is small and sub-triangular. Both stripes are slightly interrupted at centre.
Segment 2 stripe complete across segment; small mark above stripe at each side edge is squarish; smaller or absent on male.
Segment 3 stripe complete across segment.
Segment 4 stripe also compete, but paler.
Female segment 5 has only scattered whitish hairs. No white crescent. Tip indented (concave), squared. Underside dark, rarely with some white pile on sides of 2 and 3, but no stripes.
Male segment 5 stripe is narrow, whitish, continuous across segment. Segment 6 (male) usually without stripe, but may have a small white dash at centre. Underside of segments dark, rarely with some white pile on sides of 2 and 3, but no stripes. Segment 4 has fringe of long brown curved hairs. Segment 5 has only very short brown hair.

Similar Species: On Triepeolus lunatus – thorax mid stripes do not touch collar, underside of abdominal segments 2 to 4 are striped, clypeus has a ridged mid-line and the female has a crescent on abdomen tip.

Size: Female 13 mm. Male 12 mm.

Habitat: Forest edges and meadows.

Food: Adults feed on pollen and nectar.

Flight Time: July and August

Life Cycle: Larvae are cleptoparasites of Digger or Long-horned bees Melissodes species. Listed as a possible parasite of Melissodes communis which does not fly in Ontario. See Comments.

Comments: Triepeolus simplex flies only in Ontario in Canada. Niagara region per Cordero thesis from Brock University. Essex County (my photos). Also in Michigan.
T. simplex is uncommon in Wheatley: once in 2009 and twice in August of 2013. It might be a parasite of Melissodes subillata, another rare one that showed up in August of 2013, but this is just a guess.

For information on synonyms, references and type specimens see next page