Green Leioproctus Bee
Golden Tail Hairless Bee

Gold-tipped Leafcutter Bee - Megachile (Eutricharaea) chrysopyga


This page contains pictures and information about Gold-tipped Leafcutter Bees that we found in the Brisbane area, Queensland, Australia.

Body length 15mm 
We found this Leafcutter Bee on flower in garden during summer. They are medium in size. The bee has a relatively flat body. They have the large and wide head with greyish-yellow hairs on face. Its thorax is hairy with four small tufts of white hair. The top of abdomen is smooth, with white and black striped colour. The abdomen bottom is bright yellow in colour.
On their forewings there are two sub-marginal cells which are about equal in size. The scopa (for carrying pollen) is not on hind legs but on bottom of abdomen. 
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Male ?                                                                  Female
From the reference information, male Gold-tipped Leafcutter Bee has a patch of orange hair on the last segment of the abdomen. 
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Leafcutter Bees are solitary bees, they do not form colony as honey bees. Individual female builds her own nest in soft rotted wood, existing wood tunnels, tunnels in ground or under stone (depend on species).  
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Leafcutter Bees are important pollinators of some flower plants. 
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Leafcutter Bees have the stout body and large head. When flight, they make higher pitch and louder noise than Honey Bees.  
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They are visitors of different flowering plants. They have long tongues which allow them to reach the nectar in tubular flowers. Of course they feed on shallow flowers as well. 
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Please check the family Megachilidae page for general information about this bee. 

This Bee builds nest on ground

Sometimes we find circular holes in soft-leaved plants, these are made by the female Leafcutter Bee which uses the leaf to build her nest. They nest in new or exiting hollows. Female usually builds nest in existing cavity. She builds nest by  resin, gum or mud. 
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Both Leafcutter Bee and Resin Bee females provide eggs with pollen and nectar. The eggs hatch into larvae and they feed on the pollen and nectar before pupating. They are solitary (each female bee build nest,  lays and cares her own eggs).
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1. Native Bees of the Sydney region, a field guide - Anne Dollin, Michael Batley, Martyn Robinson & Brian Faulkner, Australian Native Bee Research Centre. P49.
2. Leafcutter Bee Fact File - Wild Life of Sydney, Australian Museum 2008.
3. Leafcutter Bee (genus Megachile) - Aussie Bee, Australian Native Bee Research Centre, 2005 

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Last updated: December 08, 2013.