Common Name: Cuckoo Bee
Scientific Name: Nomada succincta
Species: N. succincta
Cuckoo bee’s are fairley small bee’s which range from 1 cm. to 1.4 cm. There are also many features to identify them by. Like, they can be red, blue or yellow and black. They also have rueduced body hair and have thick, abnormaly heavy sculptured endoskeleton’s and are commenly striked as a hornet or wasp. Other features are they have saber like mandibles and they lack pollen collecting structures. There are many species of Cuckoo bee’s so they have to adapt to there surroundings. There main adaptations are there color, there size, and food sources.
Cuckoo bee’s are very new to the science world. Although you would think that the Cuckoo bee would eat pollen like other bee’s, it is still unknown how the Cuckoo bee gets its food. However we do know where they are mostly found at, the main place where cuckoo bee’s are found is in central Australia but they also range around the world. Almost all species are found here but the most common one’s seen are the turqoise heavy bodied Cuckoo bee’s. You might say “ how does this tiny bee survive,” well they are parisitic. Parisitic means they let there young be born in another species nests. To describe it better the Cukoo bee waits for the female blue bee to leave the nest, then the Cukoo bee slides in and quietly lays its larva and leaves undetected and then goes on with its life.
Even with the growing interest of Cuckoo bee’s they are slowly growing in numbers. However there is no known number of how many there are. There are only five species that are known to man of Nomada succincta.However we also know that there are 10 tribes worldwide.The reason there population is growing is that because not that many people knew about them so they were slowly multiplying.
The Cuckoo bee has been studied for a while now and scientist do not have any proof of what the cuckoo bee eats or its role in the food web. However its competetor for food and for survival is the blue banded bee. Where the Cuckoo bee eats is probably where it is mostly located, the forestlands. They probably eat during the day and whatever they can eat. Even not knowing what it eats though the Cuckoo bee is dominant when it comes to survival.
The Cuckoo bee’s main predators are birds. They are one of the Cuckoo bee’s main rivals when it comes to survival and the bird is the predator in the match up. The Cuckoo bee evades being eatin by adapting to its surroundings with its color and it also is watched out for by other predators for its wasp like looks. What stood out for me about the Cuckoo bee was its adaptions to its surroundings and how its young are born. I learned that not all bee’s eat pollen and they are not all just black or yellow. Now that we have gone over how the Cuckoo bee survives and what it looks like lets review. You learned that it can be red, blue, or black and yellow. You also learned that it is parasitic, which means it lays its larve in other non paristic insects nests. That they are fairly small and range all over the world. That’s the life of a Cuckoo bee.
Author: Holden B.
The Cuckoo Bee; Author: Lambert Surhare; Publisher: Betascrin 2011; Pages 80
Photo Credit: http://bugguide.net/node/view/126755