Bees of Canada Logo

Lasioglossum albipenne (Robertson, 1890)


Scientific Name: Lasioglossum albipenne (Robertson, 1890)

Common Name: White-winged Sweat Bee


Halictus palustris Robertson, 1890: 317 [♀, ♂]. Preoccupied, not Halictus palustris Morawitz, 1876. Synonymy by Gibbs (2010: 57).

     Lectotype ♀, designated by Cresson (1928: 63). USA, New Hampshire, Jefferson [ANSP no. 4252].

Halictus albipennis Robertson, 1890: 317 [♀, ♂].

     Lectotype ♀, designated by Cresson (1928: 57). USA, Illinois, Carlinville, by C. Robertson [ANSP no. 4251].

Halictus nymphaearus Robertson, 1895: 117. New name for Halictus palustris Robertson, 1890. Synonymy by Gibbs (2010: 57).

Halictus paludicola Dalla Torre, 1896: 75. New name for Halictus palustris Robertson, 1890. Synonymy by Gibbs (2010: 57).

Halictus nubilis Lovell, 1905: 40 [♀]. Synonymy by Lovell (1908: 40).

     Lectotype ♀, designated by Covell (1972: 13). USA, Maine, Waldoboro, 2 August [no year provided], by J.H. Lovell, on Solidago [USNM no. 71570].

Halictus (Chloralictus) lactineus Sandhouse, 1924: 34 [♂]. Synonymy by Gibbs (2010: 57).

     Holotype ♂. USA, Colorado, Boulder, 4 August 1908, by S.A. Rohwer [USNM no. 26435].

Halictus (Chloralictus) basilicus Sandhouse, 1924: 36 [♂]. Synonymy by Gibbs (2010: 57).

     Holotype ♂. USA, Connecticut, Colebrook, 1–7 September 1911, by W.M. Wheeler [USNM no. 26439].


Taxonomic notes: As indicated by Gibbs et al. (2017: 84), there has been much confusion over the names of several species of Lasioglossum, particularly with respect to consideration of Lasioglossum nymphaearum (Robertson, 1895) as a valid species. Halictus nymphaearus was proposed as a replacement for the preoccupied Halictus palustris Robertson, 1890 by Robertson (1895: 117) and subsequently has most often been considered a valid species. Gibbs (2010: 223) resurrected the name Lasioglossum oceanicum (Cockerell, 1916) from synonymy as the valid name for this species, which has most often (and incorrectly) been referred to as L. nymphaearum (e.g., Mitchell 1960) after discovering (Gibbs 2010: 61) that the lectotype of H. palustris Robertson, labeled as such and deposited at ANSP, pertained to this species (i.e., Lasioglossum albipenne (Robertson, 1890)) rather than to Dialictus nymphaearum sensu auct. Gibbs (2011: 149) later reversed this decision as he was unable to find a valid (i.e., published) lectotype designation (i.e., most of Robertson’s species were treated in Webb 1980, but this specimen was not mentioned); in fact, the designation was published by Cresson (1928: 63), thus Gibbs (2010) was correct and Gibbs et al. (2017: 84) indicated that Lasioglossum oceanicum is the correct name for what has been typically called L. nymphaearum, and the names Halictus palustris Robertson and H. nymphaearus were returned to synonymy under L. albipenne.

Gibbs (2010: 57, 2011: 43) indicated August 2 (2.viii) as a collection date for the lectotype of Halictus nubilis Lovell, 1905, while Covell (1972: 13) indicated August 21 (Aug. 21) for the specimen he designated; the other two specimens he examined were dated Aug. 19 and Aug. 25. Unfortunately, the dates for specimens in the syntype series were not provided by Lovell in original work (Lovell 1905).

DNA Barcode Index Number (BIN): BOLD:AAB6738

The lectotype designations of Gibbs (2011: 43) for H. albipennis Robertson and H. nubilis were not required, as Cresson (1928: 57) and Covell (1972: 13), respectively, had already selected and designated the same specimens, though the latter misspelled Waldoboro as “Waldeboro”.             

Distribution in Canada: Criddle et al. 1924 [ON, QC]; Gibbs 2010, 2011 [BC, AB, SK, MB, ON, NB, PE, NS]; Sheffield et al. 2014 [AB, SK, MB]; Elwell et al. 2016 [BC].

Gibbs (2010, 2011) indicated that this species was common.

Extent of Occurrence (EOO) in Canada (  km2

Index of Area of Occupancy (IAO) in Canada (  km2

Body length: ♀ 5.2 - 6.1 mm ♂ 5.6 - 6.9 mm

Forewing length: ♀ 4.5 - 5.0 mm ♂ 3.9 - 4.6 mm


Dalla Torre CG (1896) Catalogus Hymenopterorum hucusque descriptorum systematicus et synonymicus. Volume X: Apidae (Anthophila). Engelmann, Leipzig, 644 pp.

Elwell SL, Griswold T, Elle E (2016) Habitat type plays a greater role than livestock grazing in structuring shrubsteppe plant–pollinator communities. Journal of Insect Conservation 20(3): 515-525.

Gibbs J (2010) Revision of the metallic species of Lasioglossum (Dialictus) in Canada (Hymenoptera, Halictidae, Halictini). Zootaxa 2591: 1-382.

Gibbs J (2011) Revision of the metallic Lasioglossum (Dialictus) of eastern North America (Hymenoptera: Halictidae: Halictini). Zootaxa 3073: 1-216.

Lovell JH (1905) Four new species of Halictus from Maine. The Canadian Entomologist 37(2): 39-40.

Lovell JH (1908) The Halictidae of Southern Maine. Psyche 15: 32-42.

Mitchell TB (1960) Bees of the Eastern United States. Volume 1. North Carolina Agricultural Experiment Station Technical Bulletin 141: 1-538.

Robertson C (1890) New North American bees of the genera Halictus and Prosopis. Transactions of the American Entomological Society 17(4): 315-318.

Robertson C (1895) Notes on bees, with descriptions of new species. Transactions of the American Entomological Society 22(2): 115-128.

Sandhouse GA (1924) New North American species of bees belonging to the genus Halictus (Chloralictus). Proceedings of the United States National Museum 65: 1-43.

Sheffield CS, Frier SD, Dumesh D (2014) The bees (Hymenoptera: Apoidea, Apiformes) of the Prairies Ecozone, with comparisons to other grasslands of Canada. In: Giberson DJ, Cárcamo HA (Eds) Arthropods of Canadian Grasslands (Volume 4): Biodiversity and Systematics Part 2. 4. Biological Survey of Canada, Ottawa, 479 pp. [ISBN 978-0-9689321-7-9].

Criddle N, Curran CH, Viereck HL, Buckell ER (1924) The entomological record, 1923. Annual Report of the Entomological Society of Ontario 54: 87-102.

Webb DW (1980) Primary insect types in the Illinois Natural History Survey Collection, exclusinve of the Collemboa and Thysanoptera. Illinois Natural History Survey Bulletin 32(2): 55-191.

Cresson ET (1928) The types of Hymenoptera in the Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia other than those of Ezra T. Cresson. Memoirs of the American Entomological Society 5: 1-90.

Gibbs J, Ascher JS, Rightmyer MG, Isaacs R (2017) The bees of Michigan (Hymenoptera: Apoidea: Anthophila), with notes on distribution, taxonomy, pollination, and natural history. Zootaxa 4352: 1-160.

Covell CV (1972) A catalog of the J.H. Lovell types of Apoidea with lectotype designations (Hymenoptera). Proceedings of the Entomological Society of Washington 74(1): 10-18.

Sociality: Presumed Eusocial
Nesting: Ground
Pollen Specialization: Polylectic
Wintering Stage: Mated Female

Crop Preference: Not Available
Non Crop Preference: Vaccinium angustifolium

Distribution: Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Ontario, Prince Edward Island, Quebec, Saskatchewan
Ecozone: Atlantic Maritime, Boreal Shield, Mixwood Plains, Montane Cordillera, Pacific Maritime, Prairie, Western Interior Basin

female; lateral view
female; lateral view