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  • Dut: Behangersbij
  • Lat: Megachile spp.
  • Eng: Leaf-cutter bee, Megachile
  • Ger: Blattschneiderbienen
  • Dut: Koekoeksbij
  • Lat: Stelis spp.
  • Eng: Parasite bee, cuckoo bee
  • Ger: Kuckucksbienen
Leaf-cutter bee, Foto Fitis, www.fotofitis.nl

Leaf-cutter and parasite bees

Leaf-cutter bees cut round pieces out of leaves and use them to line their nest cells in dead wood. The species Megachile maritima is found mainly in the coastal regions and was observed by conservator Jacq P. Thijsse in the Zandkuil on Texel. The species feeds mainly on blackberries.

  • Cuckoo bees
    Coelioxys mandibularis, on fireweed, Foto Fitis, www.fotofitis.nl

    Cuckoo bees lay their eggs in the nests of other leaf-cutter bees. The cuckoo bee larvae destroy the egg of the true owner. Thijsse also found the cuckoo bee Coelioxys quadridentata in the Zandkuil on Texel. It is a small dark bee. The female has a pointed hind body. Coelioxys mandibularis is a typical species found in dunes. It is a food parasite by the leaf-cutter bee Megachile leachella.