bee taxonomy

Doug Yanega dyanega at DENR1.IGIS.UIUC.EDU
Mon Jul 22 11:56:48 CDT 1996

>A quick query for the bee taxonomists out there - what is the current thinking
>on the family placement of Trigona?  Is Trigonidae acceptable or has the
>family been fused with Apidae?

There are presently only two families of long-tongued bees recognized:
Megachilidae and Apidae. Apidae includes the subfamilies Xylocopinae,
Nomadinae, and Apinae, thus including everything that used to be in the
paraphyletic Anthophoridae. Trigona is in the tribe Meliponini, and as far
as I'm aware, a family Trigonidae has never been "acceptable," though
Meliponidae has been used on occasion. For reference, the entire
family-level organization of bees has been substantially altered recently,
and for the most recent phylogenies, see

Roig-Alsina & Michener (1993) and Silveira (1993) Univ. Kansas Sci. Bull.
55: 123-173 [two articles printed together]


Alexander & Michener (1995) Univ. Kansas Sci. Bull. 55: 377-424


Doug Yanega       Illinois Natural History Survey, 607 E. Peabody Dr.
Champaign, IL 61820 USA      phone (217) 244-6817, fax (217) 333-4949
 affiliate, Univ. of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, Dept. of Entomology

  "There are some enterprises in which a careful disorderliness
        is the true method" - Herman Melville, Moby Dick, Chap. 82

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