Cambridge Entomological Club, 1874

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This is the CEC archive of Psyche through 2000. Psyche is now published by Hindawi Publishing.

Gabriela Chavarría.
Phoresy on a Neotropical bumblebee (Hymenoptera: Apidae) by Anterophagus (Coleoptera: Cryptophagidae).
Psyche 101(1-2):109-111, 1994.

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Museum of Comparative Zoology
Harvard University
Cambridge, MA 021 38
On January 22, 1994, while collecting bumblebees in San Isidro, Costa Rica (702 m altitude), I observed a queen bumblebee (Bombus pullatus Franklin) carrying a beetle on her right leg and pollinating the flowers without any problem. I immediately caught the queen and her guest, and put them in an ethyl acetate killing jar where the beetle remained attached by its mandibles to the tibia of the right hind leg. The beetle (a female) which proved to be a new species of Antherophagus Latreille (Q.D. Wheeler & P. Fraissinet, pers. comm.) eventually released its hold in the killing jar. I found several records of this phoretic behavior in several North Ameri- can bumblebee species ( Packard, 1864; J.B. Smith, 1909; Blatch- ley, 1910; Wheeler, 1919; Plath, 1934) as well as some European records (Redtenbacher, 1858; Carus and Gerstaecker, 1863; Eich- hoff, 1866; Gorham, 1869; Perris, 1869-70; Bugnion, 1869-70; Seidlitz 1869-70; Hoffer, 1883; Fowler, 1889; Sharp, 1899; Wag- ner, 1907; Reitter, 1911; Sladen, 1912; Reuter, 1913; Alford, 1975), but to my knowledge this is the first record in a Neotropical bumblebee species. Although Crowson (1981) described an Antherophagus species associated with Bombus Latreille in Central America, he did not make any reference to the particular species involved. Also Roubik (1989) mentioned that Antherophagus apparently transfer between foraging Bombus at flowers. Antherophagus species have been found in nests of Bombus ephip- piatus Say also in Costa Rica (Chavarria in prep.). But it is inter- esting to note that the author has collected three nests of Bombus pullatus Franklin without beetles or any other ectosymbiont so in this case we can apply the term "phoresy." Since 1896 Lesne used Manuscript received 17 April 1994.
Pu&e 101:\W-111 (1994) hItp//psychr rnlcluborg/101/101-109 html


110 Psyche [vo~. 101
the term "phoresy" and distinguished it from ectoparasitism by the fact that the portee does not feed on the porter and eventually dis- mounts and has no further relations with the latter. The earliest observations of "this habit" seem to have been made by the British coleopterist T.J. Bold (1856, 1871). The feeding habits of the adult and larval Antherophagus seem to have been observed by some of the authors mentioned above, but they do not clearly state their observations. Charles Janet (1897) studied the known cases of phoresy more comprehensively and expanded the concept and dis- tinguished no less than six different categories. Several authors have reported cases of phoresy (Banks, 19 11; Warner, 1903; Brues, 1917a, 1917b; Rabaud, 1917; Wheeler, 1919). The majority of them made reference to Antherophagus and the ways it attaches to the legs, mouthparts or antennae of bumblebees for the purpose of being transported. Antherophagus have a very characteristic struc- ture of the mandibles which enables them to grasp firmly any of the bee's appendages, and they have red integument with golden yellow hairs that is characteristic of many myrmecophilous bee- tles.
I thank Quentin D. Wheeler and Peter Fraissinet (Cornell Uni- versity) for their help in identifying the beetle. I express my grati- tude to the people at the Universidad de Costa Rica, particularly Paul Hanson and Humberto Lezama at the Museo de Insectos for their hospitality and support. Field studies in Costa Rica were sup- ported by a post-course award from the Organization for Tropical Studies (OTS) and the Pew Charitable Trust, and the Graduate Stu- dent Council (Harvard University).
Alford, D. V. 1975. Bumblebees. Davis-Poynter, London. Banks, N. 191 1. Cases of phoresie. Ent. News 22: 194-197. Blatchley, W. S. 1910. An illustrated descriptive catalogue of the Coleoptera or bee- tles (exclusive of the Rhynchophora) known to occur in Indiana. Indianapolis, Nature Publ. Co.
Bold, T. J. 1871. A catalogue of the insects of Northumberland and Durham (Revi- sion of Coleoptera). Nat. Hist. Trans. Northumberland Durham 4:60. . 1856. Note on Antherophagus nigricornis and Bombus sylvarum. Zoologist 145003.


19941 Chavarria 11 1
Brues, C. T. 1917a. Adult Hymenopterous parasites attached to the body of their host. Proc. Nat. Acad. Sc. 3:136-140.
. 1917b. Note on the adult habits of some Hymenopterous egg-parasites of Orthoptera and Mantoidea. Psyche 24: 195-196. Bugnion, E. 1869-70. Letter to Perris on Antherophagus. L'Abeille 7:26-27 Carus, J. V., and Gerstaecker, A. 1863. Handbuch der Zoologie. Leipzig, W. Engel- mann. Vol. 2.
Crowson, R. A. 1981. The biology of the Coleoptera. London, Academic Press. Eichhoff. 1866. Sammelberichte, Berlin, Ent. Zeitschr. 293-295. Fowler, W. W. 1889. The Coleoptera of the British Islands. London, Reeve & Co. Gorham, H. S. 1869. Leptinus in bees' nests. Ent. Month. Mag. 6:89. Hoffer, E. 1883. Die Hummeln Steiermarks, 1 Halfte, p. 46. Janet, C. 1897. Etudes sur les fourmis, les Guepes et les abeilles. Note 14, Rapports des Animaux Myrmkcophiles avec les Fourmis. Limoges, V. H. Ducourtieux. Lesne, P. 1896. Moeurs du Limosina sacra. Phenomknes de transport mutuel chez les animaux articules. Origine su parasitisme chez les insectes Diptkres. Bull. Soc. Ent. France, 45:162-165.
Packard, A. S. 1864. The humble-bees of New England and their parasites, with notes of a new species of Antherophorabia, and a new genus of Proctotrupidae. Proc. Essex Inst., 4: 107-140, 3 pi.
Perris, E. 1869-70. Note on Antherophagus nigricornis. L'Abeille 7:9-10, 25-27. Plath, 0. E. 1934. Bumblebees and their ways. Macmillan Co. Rabaud, E. 1917. Etudes sur les Hymknoptkres parasites des oothkques d1Orthop- tkres. Bull. Soc. Ent. France, 10:178.
Redtenbacher, L. 1858. Fauna Austriaca. Die Kafer des deutschen Reichs. Stuttgart, K. G. Lutz.
Reitter, E. 1911. Fauna Germanica. Die Kafer des deutschen Reichs, Nach der ana- lytischen Methode bearb. Zusammengestellt und redigiert von Dr. K. G. Lutz. Stuttgart, K. G. Lutz, vol. 3.
Reuter, 0. M. 1913. Lebensgewohnheiten und Instinkte der Insekten bis zum Erwachen der sozialen Instinkte. Berlin, Friedlander and Sohn. Roubik D. W. 1989. Ecology and natural history of tropical bees. Cambridge Uni- versity Press.
Seidlitz, G. 1869-70. Note on Antherophagus nigricornis. L'Abeille 7:62-63. Sharp, D. 1899. Insects, in Cambridge Natural History 6. London, Macmillan & Co. Sladen, F. W. L. 1912. The Humble-Bee. Macmillan & Co. Smith, J. B. 1909. Annual Report of the New Jersey State Museum, including reports of the Insects of New Jersey. Trenton, N.J., MacCrellish & Quigley State Printers.
Wagner, W. 1907. Psychobiologische Untersuchungen an Hummeln mit Bezug- nahme auf die Frage der Geselligkeit im Tierreiche. Zoologica 19:145. Warner, W. V. 1903. Note on Dichromorpha viridis. Proc. Ent. Soc. Wash. 5: 308-309.
Wheeler, W. M. 1919. The phoresy of Antherophagus. Psyche 26: 145-152.


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