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2018 Bee Monitoring Results

Joan Milam

In 2018, 12 sites followed the project protocol to monitor for native bees:

  • Maine: Kennebunk Plains, Wells Barrens Preserve

  • New Hampshire: Ossipee Pine Barrens

  • Vermont:Sandbar Wildlife Management Area

  • Massachusetts: Linda Loring Nature Foundation; Frances Crane and Southeast Pine Barrens; Nantucket Conservation Foundation, Inc.; Katama Plains and The Farm Institute

  • New York: NY State Dept. of Environmental Conservation - Rocky Point, Long Island, Albany Pine Bush Preserve*

  • New Jersey: Warren Grove Range

  • Maryland: Pocomoke and Green Ridge State Forests

  • Virginia: Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute

* Albany Pine Bush Preserve results are not included in these summary results.

Over the course of the 2018 season 3,237 bees from 6 families, 25 genera, and 125 species were collected on four separate sampling events. Of the bees collected, 92 species (74%) were represented by fewer than 10 individuals and of these, 43 were represented by singletons (34%). Augochlorella aurata, the most commonly collected species, accounted for nearly half of all specimens collected (47%).

Species richness varied greatly by site and sampling effort. Estimated actual species richness generated using the USGS SPECRICH calculator (Burnham and Overton, 1979) was considerably higher for most sites. (see Fig. 2 at right)

Lasioglassum floridanum was captured only at Maryland's Furnace and Foster tracts, and was the most abundant species at Furnace tract. This is similar to the bee survey work by Selfridge et al. (2017) that found L. floridanum to be the most abundant species collected in their study. Maryland captured 3 Lasioglossum arantium, a species that has only been collected in dune habitats in Maryland and New Jersey (Selfridge et al. 2017, Gibbs 2011).

Few Lasioglossum pilosum were collected by the 12 sites. L. pilosum is considered a sand-loving bee (Goldstein and Ascher 2016) that was expected to be more abundant at the xeric communities sampled. Milam (unpublished data) found L. pilosum to be very abundant at the Montague Plains Wildlife Management Area in Montague, MA, a pitch pine-scrub oak barren; however, the Pollinator Network at Cornell reports that this bee is apparently declining in the Northeast.

Fig2_Species richness by site.jpg

The number of specimens collected from all sites within each family and genus

Table2_Table 2 number of specimens colle
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