Rediscovery of the 'extinct' bee Hesperocolletes douglasi Michener, 1965 (Colletidae: Colletinae: Paracolletini) in Western Australia and first description of the female

Juliana Pille Arnold, Mark V. Murphy, Raphael K. Didham, Terry F. Houston

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

The second known specimen of the bee Hesperocolletes douglasi Michener, 1965 is here reported as a serendipitous find amonga collection of insect pollinators from an isolated woodland remnant in the Southwest Floristic Region of Western Australia. The uniquemale holotype of this monotypic genus of bees was collected 80 years ago and officially gazetted as presumed extinct in 1994. With ourcollection of a female specimen in 2015, however, it now appears that H. douglasi may persist as an extant localised population. Follow-upefforts to find more specimens at the collection locality so far proved unsuccessful, indicating that the species is likely either very rare orinhabits an ecological niche that is yet to be discovered. Analysis of the pollen load carried by the female indicates that the species may bepolylectic. We discuss the context of the rediscovery of the bee, provide a detailed description and illustrations of the female, and makeobservations about the unusual morphological characteristics of the species. The rediscovery of H. douglasi emphasizes the importanceof conservation efforts for remnant woodlands in the region, both as potential habitat for the bee and as remaining habitat essential forother rare and threatened species in this global biodiversity hotspot.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)13310-13319
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Threatened Taxa
Volume11
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 26 Feb 2019

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