female; lateral view
male; lateral view

Scientific Name: Megachile subnigra Cresson, 1879

Common Name: Black-bottomed Leafcutter Bee


Megachile subnigra Cresson, 1879: 208 [♀,♂‚]

     Syntypes ♀,♂‚. USA, Nevada, by Morrison [ANSP]

Megachile (Xeromegachile) angelica Mitchell, 1934: 318 [♂‚] [synonymy by ]

     Holotype ♂‚. USA, California, Los Angeles County, by Coquillett [no. 148] [USNM no. 39971]

Megachile (Xeromegachile) blaisdelli Mitchell, 1934: 336 [♀] [synonymy by ]

     Holotype ♀. USA, California, Coronado, 2 June 1890, by F.E. Blaisdell [CAS no. 3617]

Megachile (Xeromegachile) moschata Mitchell, 1934: 338 [♀] [synonymy by ]

     Holotype ♀. USA, California, Riverside, 3 May 1928, by P.H. Timberlake, on Coreopsis [USNM no. 44249]


Species Notes

The female of M. subnigra is distinct, being the only species of Megachile in Canada with an entirely black scopa. The male of M. subnigra is also distinct, recognized by the combination of conspicuously pale coloured and greatly modified front legs, a rounded postmedian tranverse carina on T6, the mesepisternum without a protuberance, T5 with a white apical fascia, hind tarsomeres that are broad apically, and legs that are mostly black pubescent. These characteristics also separate the melanistic form (often considered the subspecies M. subnigra angelica Mitchell) that occurs in Canada from the pale form which presumably does not. However, as indicated by Sheffield et al. (2011), sevaral species of the subgenus Megachiloides occur in melanistic forms, so here we do not recognize subspecies.

The DNA Barcode Index Number (BIN) for this species is BOLD:AAD7209.

Sociality: Solitary
Nesting: Ground
Pollen Specialization: Polylectic
Wintering Stage: Mature Larva

Crop Preference: Not Available
Non Crop Preference: Not Available

Distribution: British Columbia
Ecozone: Western Interior Basin

Distribution Map