Ceratina (Rhysoceratina)

Taxonomy

Family: Apidae
Subfamily: Xylocopinae
Tribe: Ceratinini
Genus: Ceratina Latreille, 1802
Subgenus: Rhysoceratina Michener, 2000
Common name: small carpenter bees

Overview

Ceratina (Rhysoceratina) are small bees that have black integument with weak metallic green or blue reflections with or without yellow maculations on the face, pronotal lobes, and legs (Michener 2007). Their body length varies from 4.8–8.5 mm (Roig-Alsina 2016).

Diagnostic characteristics

(modified from Michener 2007; Roig-Alsina 2016)

May be confused with

Ceratina (Rhysoceratina) may be confused with species of Ceratina (Zadontomerus) by their similar size and shape, but they can be distinguished by their strongly punctate body and absence of the two smooth convexities on the frons that are found in C. (Zadontomerus). Additionally, C. (Rhysoceratina) is the only Ceratina subgenus that has a strong carina delimiting the dorsal surface of T6 (Michener 2007).

Host associations

Ceratina (Rhysoceratina) are known to visit multiple genera of plants in several families including: Echinopsis (Cactaceae), Oxalis (Oxalidaceae), Senecio (Asteraceae), and Baccharis (Asteraceae) (Schlumpberger et al. 2009; Roig-Alsina 2016).

Nesting behavior

The nesting biology of Ceratina (Rhysoceratina) is not well known. There is only one study that describes the nesting biology of Ceratina volitans Schrottky in southern Brazil. According to Sakagami and Laroca (1971), nests of this species were found on dead branches of composite plants at a height of around 50 cm from the ground with an entrance 2.5–3 mm in diameter and a burrow 17–24 cm in length.

Diversity

Ceratina (Rhysoceratina) includes nine species (Roig-Alsina 2016).

Known invasives

There are no known invasives.

Distribution

Ceratina (Rhysoceratina) is restricted to South America, with species known from Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Paraguay, and Uruguay (Roig-Alsina 2016).

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

<p><em>Ceratina sp. </em>female face, photo: Joshua Hengel</p>
Ceratina sp. female face, photo: Joshua Hengel
<p><em>Ceratina</em> sp. female lateral habitus, photo: Joshua Hengel</p>
Ceratina sp. female lateral habitus, photo: Joshua Hengel
<p><em>Ceratina sp. </em>female dorsal habitus, photo: Joshua Hengel</p>
Ceratina sp. female dorsal habitus, photo: Joshua Hengel
<p><em>Ceratina</em> sp. male face, photo: Joshua Hengel</p>
Ceratina sp. male face, photo: Joshua Hengel
<p><em>Ceratina</em> sp. male lateral habitus, photo: Joshua Hengel</p>
Ceratina sp. male lateral habitus, photo: Joshua Hengel
<p><em>Ceratina</em> sp. male dorsal habitus, photo: Joshua Hengel</p>
Ceratina sp. male dorsal habitus, photo: Joshua Hengel