Epanthidium

Taxonomy

Family: Megachilidae
Subfamily: Megachilinae
Tribe: Anthidiini
Genus: Epanthidium Moure, 1947
Subgenera: Ananthidium, Carloticola, Epanthidium
Common name: none

Overview

Epanthidium range from robust to moderately elongate body form. Small Epanthidium range in body length from 6.5–7.5 mm, while large Epanthidium range in length from 9–12 mm. They have black integument, sometimes tinged with red, and have yellow to cream-colored maculations on their head, thorax, and abdomen (Michener 2007).

Diversity

Epanthidium contains approximately 23 species within 3 subgenera (Michener 2007); none are known to occur in the U.S. or Canada.

Diagnostic characteristics

(modified from Michener 2007)

May be confused with

Epanthidium may be confused with Dianthidium due to a similar sloping lamella on the pronotal lobe; however, Epanthidium can be distinguished by the characteristics listed above (Michener 2007).

Known invasives

There are no known invasives.

Host associations

Little is known about the floral resources used by Epanthidium. In the subgenus Epanthidium, many species appear to be generalists, visiting a wide variety of plants including Zygophyllaceae, Fabaceae, and Asteraceae (Parizotto and Melo 2015).

Nesting behavior

Epanthidium are solitary bees that build nests primarily from plant resins. Epanthidium tigrinum builds nests consisting of groups of cells in preexisting cavities (Michener 2007). The two known species of the subgenus Ananthidium construct nests in stems that consist of one or two cells made from resin or a plant fiber and resin composite (Stange 1983). Nests from Epanthidium (Ananthidium) dilmae have been collected from dead branches of Asteraceae and in shrub vegetation approximately 0.5 m above the ground (Parizotto and Melo 2015). Epanthidium aff. sanguineum was observed occupying abandoned nests of Centris muralis, which were constructed in adobe walls (Cilla and Rolón 2012). Epanthidium aff. sanguineum collected materials from Larrea spp. to line their nests (Cilla and Rolón 2012).

Distribution

Epanthidium are restricted to the Western Hemisphere and are Neotropical in distribution, ranging from central Mexico south to Argentina (Michener 2007).

​Distribution map generated by Discover Life -- click on map for details, credits, and terms of use.

<p><em>Epanthidium tigrinum</em> female face, photo: C. Ritner</p>
Epanthidium tigrinum female face, photo: C. Ritner
<p><em>Epanthidium tigrinum</em> female lateral habitus, photo: C. Ritner</p>
Epanthidium tigrinum female lateral habitus, photo: C. Ritner
<p><em>Epanthidium tigrinum</em> female abdomen, photo: T. Brady</p>
Epanthidium tigrinum female abdomen, photo: T. Brady
<p><em>Epanthidium bertonii </em>female clypeus, photo: C. Ritner</p>
Epanthidium bertonii female clypeus, photo: C. Ritner
<p><em>Epanthidium sanguineum</em> female scutellum, photo: C. Ritner</p>
Epanthidium sanguineum female scutellum, photo: C. Ritner
<p><em>Epanthidium sanguineum </em>female axilla, photo: C. Ritner</p>
Epanthidium sanguineum female axilla, photo: C. Ritner
<p><em>Epanthidium sanguineum</em> female abdomen, photo: C. Ritner</p>
Epanthidium sanguineum female abdomen, photo: C. Ritner
<p><em>Epanthidium tigrinum</em> male abdomen, photo: C. Ritner</p>
Epanthidium tigrinum male abdomen, photo: C. Ritner
<p><em>Epanthidium tigrinum</em> male abdomen, photo: C. Ritner</p>
Epanthidium tigrinum male abdomen, photo: C. Ritner
<p><em>Epanthidium bertonii </em>female T6 with impunctate median ridge and lateral spines, photo: C. Ritner</p>
Epanthidium bertonii female T6 with impunctate median ridge and lateral spines, photo: C. Ritner
<p><em>Epanthidium joergenseni </em>male T6 with impunctate median ridge, photo: C. Ritner</p>
Epanthidium joergenseni male T6 with impunctate median ridge, photo: C. Ritner
<p><em>Epanthidium paraguayense</em> male terga, photo: C. Ritner</p>
Epanthidium paraguayense male terga, photo: C. Ritner
<p><em>Epanthidium paraguayensis </em>female with trilobed S6, photo: C. Ritner</p>
Epanthidium paraguayensis female with trilobed S6, photo: C. Ritner