Nomada banksi

Cuckoo Bee
Nomada banksi

Identification:
Female:

Cuckoo Bee Nomada banksi female. Sept 07, 2006 Wheatley, Ontario.
Cuckoo Bee Nomada banksi female. Sept 07, 2006 Wheatley, Ontario.

Head: Wide, reddish; black from antenna to top of head in center. Upper half of eyes have wide reddish-brown border. Lower eyes have a bright yellow margin. Lower face reddish on female; entirely. Cheeks much wider than eye width.
Antenna: Base (scape) and segments dark reddish on top side and reddish-yellow on underside. Segments thick, all about the same size.

Cuckoo Bee Nomada banksi female searching for Andrena hirticincta nest to lay eggs. Sept 07, 2006 Wheatley, Ontario.
Cuckoo Bee Nomada banksi female searching for Andrena hirticincta nest to lay eggs. Sept 07, 2006 Wheatley, Ontario.

Thorax: Rough, black with reddish-brown streaks, no yellow. Segment 2 (scutellum) deep indent, raised knobs rusty reddish. Segment 3 (propodeum) black with long yellow mark on each side and white hairs at end. Thorax sides more reddish with some black; white hairs. Tubercles (pronotal lobe) red to yellow, another narrow, transverse yellow mark, with top and bottom borders bright reddish brown. Underside of thorax with dense white hairs.
Wings: Wing knobs (tegulae) brownish-yellow to red. Wings dusky reddish, much lighter area before darker border at tips. Veins dark, stigma reddish-brown.
Legs: Red, streaked with black. Front legs lighter, more yellowish. Thighs (femora) black on underside. Hind shin (tibiae) black on underside and 4 to 5 long bristles at tip.
Abdomen: Black with bright lemon-yellow marks.
Segment 1: Thin wavy series of disjointed marks.
Segment 2: Very large stripe with slight interrupt at centre.
Segment 3: Narrower stripe, notched on lower margin, very widely interrupted at centre.
Segment 4: Narrow stripe, deeply notched on lower margin; very slight interrupt at centre.
Segment 5: Large square patch in centre, covering width of segment. Small yellow mark at each side.
Tip square, covered with dense silvery and yellow hairs.
Underside reddish-brown, some segments have yellow dots.

Male:
Head:  Upper face black, with short pale yellowish hairs on upper face (front); lower face including eye margin, yellow with silvery hairs.  Cheeks black, much narrower than eye width.
Antenna: Base (scape) swollen, black on top side, yellow on underside. Segments brownish-yellow to black on top side, reddish-brown on underside. Segment 1 shorter than all others.
Thorax: Black with short pale hairs. Collar (pronotum) black, sharply angled at each end. Segment 2 (scutellum) black, the raised knobs, sometimes with slight yellowish dot. Thorax sides with large yellow spot. Tubercles (pronotal lobes) brownish-yellow; silvery hairs. Underside has dense white hairs.
Wings: Wing knobs (tegulae) brownish-yellow. Wings hyaline, much lighter patch just before wide dark tips. Veins brownish-black.
Legs: Front and mid legs reddish-yellow on top, underside blackish. Hind pair darker, streaked with rusty reddish, especially the thigh (femora).
Abdomen: Black with yellow spots and bands, similar to female.
Segment 1 stripe very narrow, slightly interrupted.
Segment 2 large spot on each side, narrowing toward centre with a slight interrupt.
Segment 3 fairly large spot on each side, widely interrupted at centre.
Segment 4 and 5 stripe widely interrupted at center, lower edge has two U-shaped deep indents, sometimes breaking stripe entirely. Those of 5 may have spots instead, at side edges.
Segments 6 has centre square with a small spot at each side edge.
Abdomen tip is black, rounded with a slight notch, underside with pale erect hairs.
Underside is black, except segments 2 and 3 yellow.

Size: Female 7.5 to 9 mm. Male 7.5 to 8.5 mm.

Habitat: Meadows with asters, goldenrod and Mining Bee Andrena asteris

Food: Flower pollen and nectar.

Flight Time: August to September.

Life Cycle: According to Ascher in Northeastern Naturalist, 2014, Vol. 21; N. banksi is possibly a parasite of the Mining Bee Andrena asteris.

Comments: Essex County – Ojibway species list 2008. Also Middlesex and Brant Counties.

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

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