Habitat and Ecology
adult of Colletes hederae collects pollen of Hedera helix
Molecular Biology and Genetics
Barcode data: Colletes hederae
Below is a sequence of the barcode region Cytochrome oxidase subunit 1 (COI or COX1) from a member of the species.
See the BOLD taxonomy browser for more complete information about this specimen and other sequences.
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Statistics of barcoding coverage: Colletes hederae
Public Records: 6
Specimens with Barcodes: 9
Species With Barcodes: 1
IUCN Red List Assessment
Red List Category
Red List Criteria
EU 27 regional assessment: Least Concern (LC)
Listed as Least Concern because this species can be locally very common and it is spreading its range into western and central Europe.
This species is included in the National Red List or Red Data Book of Slovenia (Endangered; Anonymous 2002).
It is recommended to conserve suitable habitats (e.g., open vegetation types with bare soil), nesting sites and the host plants of this species.
Further research is required to establish the current status of the species throughout its range and to identify the existing threats.The species occurs in protected areas.
These mining bees are known from Austria, Belgium, Channel Islands, Croatia, Cyprus, southern England, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Serbia, Slovenia, Spain and Switzerland.
They have been only recently described (Schmidt & Westrich 1993) as a distinct species. Until then, they were confused with another species of Colletes the morphologically very similar Colletes halophilus.
The thorax of the adults is covered by orange-brown hair, while each abdominal segment has an apical orangey hair-band. The females are on average 13 millimetres (0.51 in) long, while the males are about 10 mm (0.39 in) long.
The adults emerge late in the year (the males from late August and the females a little later in early September) and remain on the wing until early November. The principal pollen forage plant is Ivy (Hedera helix) (hence the specific epithet hederae), but both sexes will also nectar at Ivy flowers too. When Ivy is scarce, other species of plants are also visited. The females supply the larval brood almost cells exclusively with nectar and pollen of ivy flowers. When Ivy flowering is delayed, females may also collect pollen at various members of the Daisy family (Asteraceae).
These are solitary bees and do not live in colonies and do not overwinter as adults. They nest in clay-sandy soils, especially in loess hills and soft-rock cliffs. Like many other solitary bees, they can often be found nesting in dense aggregations, sometimes numbering many tens of thousands of nests. In parts of the west European range of the species, Colletes hederae are fequently parasitized by the larvae of the meloid beetle Stenoria analis, that feed on the supply of nectar and pollen prepared by females bees in their nests.
- Gogala, A., 1999. Bee Fauna of Slovenia: Checklist of species (Hymenoptera: Apoidea). Scopolia, 42: 1-79.
- Peeters, T.M.J., I.P. Raemakers & J. Smit, 1999. Voorlopige atlas van de Nederlandse bijen (Apidae). European Invertebrate Survey Nederland, Leiden, 230 pp.
- Schmidt, K., & Westrich, P. 1993. Colletes hederae n.sp., eine bisher unerkannte auf Efeu (Hedera) spezialisierte Bienenart (Hymenoptera: Apoidea). Entomol. Z. 103 (6) pp. 89–112.
- Schwarz, M., F. Gusenleitner, P. Westrich & H. Dathe, 1996. Katalog der Bienen Österreichs, Deutschlands und der Schweiz (Hymenoptera, Apidae). Entomofauna Suppl. 8: 1-398.
- Westrich, P., 2008. Flexibles Pollensammelverhalten der ansonsten streng oligolektischen Seidenbiene Colletes hederae Schmidt & Westrich (Hymenoptera: Apidae). Eucera, Heft 2: pp 17–30
- Vereecken N. J. & Mahé G., 2007. Larval aggregations of the blister beetle Stenoria analis (Schaum) (Coleoptera: Meloidae) sexually deceive patrolling males of their host, the solitary bee Colletes hederae Schmidt & Westrich (Hymenoptera: Colletidae). Annales de la Société Entomologique de France