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Hoplitis albifrons albifrons (Kirby, 1837)


Scientific Name: Hoplitis albifrons albifrons (Kirby, 1837)

Common Name: White-fronted Small-Mason Bee


Chelostoma albifrons Kirby, 1837, in Richardson, 1837: 270 [♂].

     Holotype ♂. CANADA, Lat[itude]. 65°[N] [specimen missing].

Monumetha obsoleta Cresson, 1864: 388 [♂].

     Lectotype ♂, designated by Cresson (1916: 126). CANADA, Northwest Territories [Hudson Bay Territory], Great Slave Lake [ANSP no. 2255].

Monumetha borealis Cresson, 1864: 388 [♀].

     Holotype ♀. CANADA [British America], Northwest Territories, Great Slave Lake [ANSP no. 2253].

Megachile oblonga Provancher, 1882: 230 [♀]. Preoccupied, not Megachile oblonga Smith, 1879). Synonymy by Titus (1906: 159).

     Holotype ♀. CANADA, Quebec, Cap Rouge [ULQC no 962].

Monumentha alibifrons Beck, 1929: 306. Lapsus of Monumentha albifrons (Kirby, 1837).


Taxonomic notes: Michener (1947b:303) indicated that the type specimen of Chelostoma albifrons Kirby, 1837 was likely no longer in existence.

Though Provancher (1882: 230) did not provide a type locality for Megachile oblonga Provancher, 1882, his notebook indicated Cap Rouge, Quebec (see Sheffield and Perron 2014: 136). Sheffield and Perron (2014: 136) designated a lectotype specimens for Megachile oblonga, but this was not required as Provancher (1882: 230) indicated “[u]ne seule femelle”, the specimen was previously examined by Titus (1906: 159).

DNA Barcode Index Number (BIN): BOLD:AAB7508

This BIN is shared with Hoplitis albifrons argentifrons (Cresson, 1864).

Biology: Fye (1965) and Frolich et al. (1988) reported this species using trap nests, the former recording Stelis subemarginata (Cresson) as a nest parasite. Farzan et al. (2017) recorded Monodontomerus spp. (Torymidae) as a nest parasite of H. albifrons maura in California. Michener (1947) indicated that maura> builds its nest partitions using macerated leaves and coarse mud.

Distribution in Canada: Cresson 1864 [NT "Great Slave Lake", as Monumetha borealis Cresson; Hudson's Bay Territory, as M. obsoleta Cresson]; Provancher 1882 [Canada [QC, Cap Rouge] as Megachile oblonga Provancher]; Brodie and White 1883 [Canada, as M. borealis Cresson]; Couper 1883 [Canada, as M. borealis Cresson]; Criddle et al. 1924 [NT, BC, AB, MB, ON, QC, as H. argentifrons Cresson]; Criddle 1926 [NT, BC, AB, MB, ON, QC]; Cockerell 1936 [AB]; Michener 1947a [AK, YT, NT, AB, SK, MB, ON, QC, NS]; 1947b [AK, YT, NT, AB, SK, MB, ON, QC, NS, as as H. albifrons albifrons (Kirby)]; Buckell 1950 [BC]; Hurd and Michener 1955 [YT, NT, BC, AB, SK, MB, ON, NB, NS, NF, as H. albifrons albifrons (Kirby)]; Mitchell 1962 [AK, BC to NS]; Fye 1965 [ON}; Armbruster and Guinn 1989 [AK]; Sheffield et al. 2003 [NS], 2014 [AB, SK, MB]; Sedivy et al. 2013 [AK]; Rowe 2017 [YT, as H. albifrons albifrons; BC, as H. albifrons argentifrons]; Sheffield and Heron 2019 [BC]; Nelson et al. 2021 [AB]; Vizza et al. 2021 [ON]; Gibbs et al. 2023 [MB]; Discover Life [AK, YT, NT, BC, AB, SK, MB, ON, QC, NB, NS, NL].


Provancher L (1882c) Faune Canadienne. Les Insectes Hyménoptères. Naturaliste canadien 13: 225-242.

Titus ESG (1906) Some notes on the Provancher Megachilidae. Proceedings of the Entomological Society of Washington 7: 149-165.

Kirby W (1837) Fauna Boreali-Americana. Part the Fourth and Last. The Insects. Norwich, London, 325 pp.

Sheffield C, Perron J (2014) Annotated catalogue of the bees described by Léon Provancher (Hymenoptera: Apoidea). The Canadian Entomologist 146 (2): 117-169.

Cresson ET (1864) On the North American species of several genera of Apidae. Proceedings of the Entomological Society of Philadelphia 2: 373-411.

Michener CD (1947b) A revision of the American species of Hoplitis (Hymenoptera, Megachilidae). Bulletin of the American Museum of Natural History 89(4): 257-318.

Beck DE (1929) Bees of the sub-family Osminae in the collection of the Brigham Yound University. Bulletin of the Brooklyn Entomological Society 24(5): 303-306.

Michener CD (1947a) A character analysis of a solitary bee, Hoplitis albifrons (Hymenoptera, Megachilidae). Evolution 1(3): 172: 185.

Sociality: Solitary
Nesting: Cavity Renter
Pollen Specialization: Polylectic
Wintering Stage: Mature Larva

Crop Preference: Not Available
Non Crop Preference: Not Available

Distribution: Alaska, Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, New Brunswick, Newfoundland, Northwest Territories, Nova Scotia, Ontario, Quebec, Saskatchewan, Yukon
Ecozone: Atlantic Maritime, Boreal Cordillera, Boreal Plains, Boreal Shield, Hudson Plains, Mixwood Plains, Montane Cordillera, Newfoundland Boreal, Pacific Maritime, Prairie, Taiga Cordillera, Taiga Plains, Taiga Shield, Western Interior Basin