Skip to main content Skip to main navigation menu Skip to site footer
Published: 2016-11-10

Eight new species of Andrena Fabricius (Hymenoptera: Apoidea: Andrenidae) from Israel—a Mediterranean hotspot for wild bees

Department of Zoology, Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv 69978, Israel.
Kastanienweg 19, Ergolding, Germany.
Department of Zoology, Tel Aviv University, Tel Aviv 69978, Israel.
Hymenoptera Eastern Mediterranean Levant neotype new species pan trap solitary bee


More than 150 solitary bee species of the genus Andrena Fabricius are known from Israel and the West Bank, where they are distributed along a broad climatic gradient and diverse habitats and vegetation types. Extensive collecting throughout Israel in recent years has yielded eight new species and one new subspecies, adding to the rich bee fauna of the region:   A. crocusella Pisanty & Scheuchl n. sp., A. danini Pisanty & Scheuchl n. sp., A. hermonella Scheuchl & Pisanty n. sp., A. israelica Scheuchl & Pisanty n. sp., A. judaea Scheuchl & Pisanty n. sp., A. menahemella Scheuchl & Pisanty n. sp., A. palaestina Pisanty & Scheuchl n. sp., A. perahia Pisanty & Scheuchl n. sp., and A. sphecodimorpha mediterranea Pisanty & Scheuchl n. ssp. The previously unknown female of A. fimbriatoides Scheuchl 2004 and male of A. wolfi Gusenleitner & Scheuchl 2000 are also described here for the first time. The discovery of males of A. wolfi lead us to reinstate A. iohannescaroli Nobile 2000 as a valid taxon. Detailed morphological description and differential diagnosis against closest relatives are provided for all species, as well as information on the distribution, phenology and flower visitation, when available. A neotype is designated for A. sphecodimorpha Hedicke, the holotype of which is considered to be lost. Additional collecting efforts in diverse habitats and seasons, incorporating diverse collecting techniques, are required in order to deepen our knowledge of the rich bee fauna in threatened habitats in the Mediterranean Basin, which constitutes one of the world’s major hotspots for wild bees.



  1. Aizen, M.A., Garibaldi, L.A., Cunningham, S.A. & Klein, A.M. (2008) Long-term global trends in crop yield and production reveal no current pollination shortage but increasing pollinator dependency. Current Biology, 18 (20), 1–4.

    Cuttelod, A., García, N., Abdul Malak, D., Temple, H.J. & Katariya, V. (2009) The Mediterranean: a biodiversity hotspot under threat. In: Vié, J.-C., Hilton-Taylor, C. & Stuart, S.N. (Eds.), Wildlife in a Changing World―An Analysis of the 2008 IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. IUCN, Gland, pp. 89–104.

    Dorchin, A. (2013) The Effects of Habitat Fragmentation on the Community Structure and Diversity of Native Bees in a Threatened Mediterranean Habitat. PhD thesis, University of Haifa, Haifa, 105 pp.

    Dubitzky, A., Plant, J. & Schönitzer, K. (2010) Phylogeny of the bee genus Andrena Fabricius based on morphology. Mitteilungen der Münchner Entomologischen Gesellschaft, 100, 137–202.

    Dunn, R.R. (2005) Modern insect extinctions, the neglected majority. Conservation Biology, 19 (4), 1030–1036.

    Garibaldi, L.A., Steffan-Dewenter, I., Winfree, R., Aizen, M.A., Bommarco, R., Cunningham, S.A., Kremen, C., Carvalheiro, L.G., Harder, L.D., Afik, O., Bartomeus, I., Benjamin, F., Boreux, V., Cariveau, D., Chacoff, N.P., Dudenhöffer, J.H., Freitas, B.M., Ghazoul, J., Greenleaf, S., Hipólito, J., Holzschuh, A., Howlett, B., Isaacs, R., Javorek, S.K., Kennedy, C.M., Krewenka, K., Krishnan, S., Mandelik, Y., Mayfield, M.M., Motzke, I., Munyuli, T., Nault, B.A., Otieno, M., Petersen, J., Pisanty, G., Potts, S.G., Rader, R., Ricketts, T.H., Rundlöf, M., Seymour, C.L., Schüepp, C., Szentgyörgyi, H., Taki, H., Tscharntke, T., Vergara, C.H., Viana, B.F., Wanger, T.C., Westphal, C., Williams, N. & Klein, A.M. (2013) Wild pollinators enhance fruit set of crops regardless of honey bee abundance. Science, 339 (6127), 1608-1611.

    Gotlieb, A., Hollender, Y. & Mandelik, Y. (2011) Gardening in the desert changes bee communities and pollination network characteristics. Basic and Applied Ecology, 12 (4), 310–320.

    Gusenleitner, F. & Scheuchl, E. (2000) Zwei neue Andrena-Arten aus dem nahen Osten sowie Beschreibung des Maennchens von Andrena isabellina Warncke (Hymenoptera: Apidae: Andreninae). Entomofauna, 21 (11), 117–132.

    Gusenleitner, F. & Schwarz, M. (2002) Weltweite Checkliste der Bienengattung Andrena: mit Bemerkungen und Ergänzungen zu paläarktischen Arten (Hymenoptera, Apidae, Andreninae, Andrena). Entomofauna, 10 (Supplement), 1280 pp.

    Hedicke, H. (1942) Über paläarktische Apiden. (Hym.) III. Mitteilungen der Deutschen Entomologischen Gesellschaft, 11 (5/6), 63–65.

    Klein, A.M., Vaissiere, B.E., Cane, J.H., Steffan-Dewenter, I., Cunningham, S.A., Kremen, C. & Tscharntke, T. (2007) Importance of pollinators in changing landscapes for world crops. Proceedings of the Royal Society of London B: Biological Sciences, 274 (1608), 303–313.

    LeBuhn, G., Griswold, T., Minckley, R., Droege, S., Roulston, T.A., Cane, J., Parker, F., Buchmann, S., Tepedino, V., Williams, N., Kremen, C. & Messenger, O. (2003) A standardized method for monitoring bee populations—the bee inventory (BI) plot (draft). Available from: (accessed 6 January 2016)

    Mavromoustakis, G.A. (1958) On Some Bees from Greece (Hymenoptera: Apoidea). Entomologische Berichten, 18, 9–13.

    Michener, C.D. (1979) Biogeography of the bees. Annals of the Missouri Botanical Garden, 66 (3), 277–347.

    Michener, C.D. (2007) The Bees of the World, 2nd edition. Johns Hopkins University Press, Baltimore, Maryland, 953 pp.

    Nobile V. (2000) Le Andrene W-paleartiche con due celle cubitali (Hymenoptera, Apoidea, Andrenidae) con descrizione di Parandrena iohannescaroli sp. n. Bollettino dell'Accademia Gioenia di Scienze Naturali, 33 (358), 35–42.

    Osytshnjuk, A.Z. (1995) Andrenidae. In: Lehr, P.A. (Ed.), Key to the Insects of Russian Far East. Vol. IV. Neuropteroidea, Mecoptera, Hymenoptera. Part 1. Nauka, St. Petersburg, pp. 489–527. [in Russian]

    O'Toole, C. & Raw, A. (1991) Bees of the World. Blandford Press, London, 192 pp.

    Pisanty, G. & Mandelik, Y. (2015) Profiling crop pollinators: life-history traits predict habitat use and crop visitation by Mediterranean wild bees. Ecological Applications, 25 (3), 742–752.

    Potts, S.G., Vulliamy, B., Dafni, A., Ne'eman, G. & Willmer, P. (2003) Linking bees and flowers: how do floral communities structure pollinator communities? Ecology, 84 (10), 26282642.

    Potts, S.G., Biesmeijer, J.C., Kremen, C., Neumann, P., Schweiger, O. & Kunin, W.E. (2010) Global pollinator declines: trends, impacts and drivers. Trends in Ecology and Evolution, 25 (6), 345–353.

    Scheuchl, E., Schindler, M. & Al-Ghzawi, A.M. (2004) Andrena (Holandrena) fimbriatoides Scheuchl spec. nov. (Hymenoptera: Apoidea, Andrenidae), a new bee species from Jordan. Zoology in the Middle East, 32 (1), 85–90.

    Schindler, M., Diestelhorst, O., Härtel, S., Saure, C., Schanowski, A. & Schwenninger, H.R. (2013). Monitoring agricultural ecosystems by using wild bees as environmental indicators. BioRisk, 8, 53–71.

    Shapira, T. (2015). The Effects of Cattle Grazing on Spring Foraging Potential of Honeybees and Wild Bees. MSc thesis, the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Rehovot, Israel, 90 pp.

    Underwood, E.C., Viers, J.H., Klausmeyer, K.R., Cox, R.L. & Shaw, M.R. (2009) Threats and biodiversity in the Mediterranean biome. Diversity and Distributions, 15 (2), 188–197.

    Warncke, K. (1968) Die Untergattungen der westpaläarktischen Bienengattung Andrena F. Memorias e Estudos Muséu Zoologico da Universidade de Coimbra, 307, 1–110.

    Warncke, K. (1969) A contribution to the knowledge of the genus Andrena (Apoidea) in Israel. Israel Journal of Entomology, 4, 377–408.

    Westrich, P. (1989) Die Wildbienen Baden-Württembergs. Vol. I & II. Ulmer Verlag, Stuttgart, 972 pp.