Who will solve the Mystery of the Australian Mellitidia?
Just look at that gorgeous bee! She’s small, gold and awfully busy. She doesn’t care that “busy” is a bee stereotype. She has more important things to worry about.
She’s probably nesting in ground burrows.
From my observations, she appears to be a buzz pollinator.
She is thought to be a solitary rather than social species.
She’s the only Mellitidia found in Australia, and even then, she’s only found in the Far North.
iNaturalist just says, “Mellitidia tomentifera is a species of insects with 67 observations”.
There are a few photos here and there on the internet. There are little snippets of observation and some complicated scientific papers, but little else.
Perhaps I can watch and photograph and record my observations and be the first to record some of her special features to share with the world!
This post was previously published in The Daily Cuppa on Medium by the same author.
Want a Pocket-book Guide to help you identify Australian bees in your garden? This is my favourite:
Bees & other beneficial insects: a pocket-book guide by Megan Halcroft. Buy it here.
Other relevant resources:
YouTube Australian Bee Playlist
Aussie Bee – lots of information!
Australian Bee Diversity with Dr Tobias Smith
Interview with Dr Kit Prendergast