Osmia (Metallinella)


Family: Megachilidae
Subfamily: Megachilinae
Tribe: Osmiini
Genus: Osmia Panzer, 1806
Subgenus: Metallinella Tkalců, 1966
Common name: none


Osmia (Metallinella) are dull metallic blue or green bees that range in body length from 6.5–12 mm (Michener 2007).

Diagnostic characteristics

(modified from Michener 2007)

May be confused with

Osmia (Metallinella) may be confused with O. (Helicosmia) due to similar body form. However, they can be differentiated by the above diagnostic characteristics (Michener 2007).

Host associations

Osmia (Metallinella) have been observed visiting Brassicaceae (Praz et al. 2008; Müller 2018).

Nesting behavior

Osmia (Metallinella) nest in the cavities of wood-boring insects, insect burrows in dead wood, drilled borings in wooden blocks and pithy stems, hollow stems, and holes and cavities in walls (Müller 2018). Nest plugs are made of chewed leaves. The cavities do not have separate cells, so the nests lack cell partitions. Cavities are filled with pollen. Eggs are scattered throughout the nest with the pollen. Cocoons, when formed, are arranged at random in various orientations (Radchenko 1978; Bosch et al. 1993).


Osmia (Metallinella) contains one species, O. brevicornis, which does not occur in the U.S. or Canada (Michener 2007).

Known invasives

There are no known invasives.


Osmia (Metallinella) have been found in northern Africa, southwestern Asia, and throughought Europe (Michener 2007; Müller 2018).

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

<p><em>Osmia brevicornis </em>female face, photo: Chelsey Ritner</p>
Osmia brevicornis female face, photo: Chelsey Ritner
<p><em>Osmia brevicornis </em>female lateral habitus, photo: Chelsey Ritner</p>
Osmia brevicornis female lateral habitus, photo: Chelsey Ritner
<p><em>Osmia brevicornis </em>female abdomen, photo: Chelsey Ritner</p>
Osmia brevicornis female abdomen, photo: Chelsey Ritner