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The cuckoo bee genus Sphecodes Latreille, 1804 (Hymenoptera, Halictidae) in Iran
expand article infoYulia V. Astafurova, Maksim Yu. Proshchalykin§, Maximilian Schwarz|
‡ Zoological Institute, Russian Academy of Sciences, St. Petersburg, Russia
§ Far Eastern Branch of Russian Academy of Sciences, Vladivostok, Russia
| Unaffiliated, Ansfelden, Austria
Open Access

Abstract

An overview is provided of the Iranian fauna of cleptoparastic bee species in the genus Sphecodes Latreille (Halictinae: Halictini: Sphecodina). In total, 25 species are recorded from Iran, eight of which are newly recorded for the country: Sphecodes anatolicus Warncke, 1992, S. croaticus Meyer, 1922, S. haladai Warncke, 1992, S. pectoralis Morawitz, 1876, S. rubicundus Hagens, 1875, S. rufiventris (Panzer, 1798), S. saxicolus Warncke, 1992, and S. tadschicus Blüthgen, 1935. A new species S. ebmeri Astafurova & Proshchalykin, sp. n. (Mazandaran) is described and illustrated. For many species of Sphecodes the distribution data within Iran are enlarged.

Keywords

taxonomy, new species, new records, fauna, Palaearctic region

Introduction

Sphecodes Latreille, 1804 is a large genus of family Halictidae distributed worldwide except in the Polar Regions. Most Sphecodes species are cleptoparasites of Lasioglossum Curtis and Halictus Latreille (Halictidae), but some attack nests of other pollen-collecting short-tongued bees, Nomioides Schenck (Halictidae), Andrena Fabricius, Calliopsis Smith, Melitturga Latreille, and Perdita Smith (Andrenidae), Colletes Latreille and Lonchopria Vachal (Colletidae), and perhaps Dasypoda Latreille (Melittidae) (Michener 2007).

The present paper is part of a series of works dealing with the bees of the genus Sphecodes of the territory of the Palaearctic region (Astafurova and Proshchalykin 2014, 2015a, b, c, 2016a, b, 2017a, b, c, 2018, Astafurova et al. 2014, 2015, 2018a, b, c). Currently 77 species are known from this region, but the Sphecodes fauna of Iran is particularly under-recorded.

There are currently 862 species of bee known from Iran (Ascher and Pickering 2018), but new records and species continue to be added (e.g., Khodaparast and Monfared 2012, Khaghaninia et al. 2013, Nadimi et al. 2014; Kuhlmann and Proshchalykin 2015, Safi et al. 2018, Proshchalykin and Kuhlmann 2018). The genus Sphecodes has been one of the more overlooked taxa partly due to the complexity of positively identifying material. Only one species – Sphecodes persicus Blüthgen, 1924 (=S. pinguiculus Pérez, 1903) of this genus has been described from Iran (Blüthgen 1924) so far, and in total only 16 species have been recorded for the country (Warncke 1992, Ascher and Pickering 2018). Records of Sphecodes from Iran in other published sources (Bogusch and Straka 2012, Özbek et al. 2015, Astafurova and Proshchalykin 2017b) were not original and referenced from a previous paper (Warncke 1992).

Here we have attempted to build a survey of Iranian material available and to provide an overview of the 25 species found across Iran. Of these species, eight are recorded for the first time for the Iranian fauna and one species is described as new. For each species we provide a list of Iranian localities from the material examined and give previously published occurrences along with a summary of the wider distribution.

Materials and methods

The results presented in this paper are based on 324 specimens collected in Iran and currently housed in the Zoological Institute (St. Petersburg, Russia) and private collection of Maximilian Schwarz (Ansfelden, Austria). Acronyms for collections from which specimens were borrowed or are deposited are as follows: OÖLM – Oberösterreichisches Landesmuseum, Linz, Austria; PCMS – private collection of Maximilian Schwarz, Ansfelden, Austria; ZISP – Zoological Institute, Russian Academy of Sciences, St. Petersburg, Russia.

The taxonomy and distribution of species generally follows that of Warncke (1992), Bogusch and Straka (2012), Astafurova and Proshchalykin (2017b), and Özbek et al. (2015). A detailed current synonymy of the species has been given by Astafurova and Proshchalykin (2017b). Morphological terminology employed below follows that of Michener (2007) and Engel (2001). The ventral surfaces of some flagellomeres bear a distinctive patch or zone of sensilla trichodea A (sensu Årgent and Svensson 1982), and we refer to these as the “tyloids”, easily observable under light microscopy. The abbreviations F, T, and S are used for flagellomere, metasomal tergum, and metasomal sternum, respectively. The density of integumental punctures is described using the following formula: puncture diameters (in μm) / ratio of distance between punctures to average puncture diameter, e.g., 15–20 μm / 0.5–1.5. Integumental sculpturing, aside from distinctive surface punctation, is described as follows: reticulate: superficially net-like or made up of a network of raised lines; rugose: irregular, nonparallel, wrinkled raised lines (rugae); tessellate: a regular network of shallow grooves with flat interspaces.

Specimens were studied with the use of a Leica M205A stereomicroscope and photographs taken with a combination of stereomicroscope Olympus SZX10 and digital camera Canon EOS70D. Final images representing a composite of several photographs taken at different focal planes and combined using Helicon Focus 6. All images were post-processed for contrast and brightness using Adobe Photoshop.

The species are presented alphabetically and those that could not be inspected in this paper are quoted from published sources. Provinces are presented in alphabetical order and the names of provinces are given in bold type. New distributional records are noted with an asterisk (*).

Taxonomy

Sphecodes albilabris (Fabricius, 1793)

Published records

Warncke 1992: 50 (map); Ascher and Pickering 2018 (Alborz, Tehran).

Material examined

Golestan: 70 km E Minudasht, 1050 m, 12.VI.2010, (1 ♀), leg. M. Halada [PCMS]. Semnan: 10 km W Damghan, 10.VI.2010, (1 ♀), leg. M. Halada [PCMS].

Distribution

Europe (north to Finland and Sweden), North Africa, Caucasus, Turkey, Iran (Alborz, *Golestan, Tehran, Semnan), Central Asia, Syria, Israel, Russia (east to Far East), China (Liaoning, Inner Mongolia, Hebei, Beijing, Shanxi, Gansu).

Sphecodes alternatus Smith, 1853

Published records

Warncke 1992: 47 (map); Ascher and Pickering 2018 (Isfahan, Tehran).

Material examined

East Azerbaijan: 10 km E Shabeslar, 1540 m, 19.VI.2010, (1 ♂), leg. M. Halada [PCMS]. Golestan: 70 km E Minudasht, 1050 m, 12.VI.2010, (1 ♂), leg. M. Halada [PCMS]. Kerman: 30 km S Sirjan, 1730 m, 7.VI.2010, (3 ♂), leg. M. Halada [PCMS]. Mazandaran: 20 km S Amoi, 430 m, 6.VI.2014, (4 ♂), leg. J. Halada [PCMS]; 10 km S Chaloos, 380 m, 15.VI.2010, (5 ♂), leg. M. Halada [PCMS].

Distribution

South and Central Europe, North Africa, Caucasus, Turkey, Iran (*East Azerbaijan, *Golestan, Isfahan, *Kerman, *Mazandaran, Tehran), Central Asia, Russia (east to Khakass Republic), China (Gansu, Xinjiang).

Sphecodes anatolicus Warncke, 1992

Material examined

East Azerbaijan: 10 km E Shabeslar, 1540 m, 19.VI.2010, (1 ♂), leg. M. Halada [PCMS].

Distribution

Italy (Sicily), Georgia, Armenia, Turkey, *Iran (East Azerbaijan), Central Asia.

Sphecodes crassus Thomson, 1870

Published records

Ascher and Pickering 2018 (Mazandaran).

Material examined. Mazandaran: Elbrus, 50 km S Chalus, 2800 m, 26.VII.1977, (1 ♀, 8 ♂), leg. A. Ebmer [PCMS]. West Azerbaijan: Serou, 1650 m, 28.V.2010, (2 ♀), leg. M. Halada [PCMS].

Distribution

Europe (north to 64°), Russia (east to Far East), North Africa, Caucasus, Turkey, Iran (Mazandaran, *West Azerbaijan), Central Asia, Mongolia, China (Inner Mongolia, Shanxi), Japan (Hokkaido, Honshu).

Variation

Specimens from Iran differ from specimens from the rest of the range by having an entirely dark metasoma with distinctly punctate T2 in male.

Sphecodes croaticus Meyer, 1922

Material examined

East Azerbaijan: 10 km E Shabestar, 1540 m, 19.VI.2010, (1 ♂), M. Halada [PCMS].

Distribution

South and Central Europe, Russia (European part), Caucasus, Turkey, *Iran (East Azerbaijan), Turkmenistan.

Sphecodes ebmeri Astafurova & Proshchalykin, sp. n.

Figure 1 a–e, g

Material examined

Holotype ♂: Iran, Mazandaran, Elbrus, 50 km S (90 km Straße) Chalus, 2800 m, 26.VII.1977, leg. A.W. Ebmer [OÖLM].

Figure 1. 

Sphecodes ebmeri Astafurova & Proshchalykin, sp. n., holotype, male (a, d, f–i), S. nomioides Pesenko, male (b, e), and S. geoffrellus (Kirby), male (c): a–c genitalia, dorsal view d, e antennae, lateral view f habitus, lateral view g head, frontal view h mesosoma, dorsal view i metasoma, dorsal view.

Diagnosis

The male is close to Sphecodes nomioidis Pesenko, 1979 owing to similar structure, sculpture of the body including distinctly punctate metasomal terga and similar small trapezoidal gonostylar shape (Fig. 1a, b). In gonostylar shape the new species is also close to S. geoffrellus (Kirby, 1802) (Fig. 1 c), but differs from both species by having less developed tyloids covering about 1/2 ventral surface of flagellomeres (Fig. 1d) (covering at least 4/5 ventral surface of flagellomeres in S. nomioidis and S. geoffrellus) (Fig. 1e).

Description

(Male). (Fig. 1f). Total body length 5.5 mm. Head (Fig. 1g) black (except brown mouthparts and antenna); weakly transverse, at most 1.1 times as wide as long; vertex not elevated, distance from top of head to upper margin of a lateral ocellus about 2 lateral ocellar diameters as seen in dorsal view; antenna attain middle of mesoscutum, F1 transverse, 0.75 times as long as wide, F2 1.3 times as long as wide, remaining flagellomeres about 1.2 times as long as wide; tyloids (from F3 onwards) covering about 1/2 ventral surface of flagellomeres; clypeus, paraocular area and frons with confluent punctures (15–25 μm); area between ocellus and eye with punctures separated at most by 1.5 of a puncture diameter; vertex behind ocellus and gena rugose; face below antennal toruli with snow-white, plumose pubescence, obscuring the underlying integument.

Mesosoma black; mesoscutum and mesoscutellum with coarse punctures (20–30 μm) separated by 0.5–2 puncture diameters (Fig. 1h); mesepisternum and hypoepimeral area shiny, reticulate-rugose, with sparse, erect, plumose pubescence; propodeal triangle (metapostnotum) and remainder of propodeum shiny, coarsely rugose; femur dark brown, tibia and tarsi brownish with yellow. Hind wing with basal vein strongly curved; costal margin with 5 hamuli.

Metasoma (Fig. 1i) dark-brown; terga distinctly punctate (ca 10 μm / 2–4); marginal zones impunctate, smooth on T1 and T2 and finely tessellate on T3 and T4; sterna finely tessellate with sparse microscopic setae pores; gonocoxite dorsally with impression; membranous part of gonostylus small, trapezoidal.

Female unknown.

Etymology

This species is dedicated to the Austrian hymenopterist Andreas W. Ebmer in recognition of his outstanding contributions to bee researches.

General distribution

Only known from the type locality in Iran (Mazandaran).

Sphecodes ephippius (Linnaeus, 1767)

Published records

Warncke 1992: 42 (map); Ascher and Pickering 2018 (Mazandaran, Zanjan).

Material examined

Golestan: 40 km Minudasht, 750 m, 1.VI.2014, (1 ♂), leg. J. Halada [PCMS]. Mazandaran: 10 km N Gashar, 2300 m, 7.VI.2014, (1 ♀), leg. J. Halada [PCMS].

Distribution

Europe (north to 62°), Caucasus, Turkey, Iran (*Golestan, Mazandaran, Zanjan), Central Asia, Mongolia, Russia (east to Irkutsk Prov.), China (Xinjiang).

Sphecodes gibbus (Linnaeus, 1758)

Published records

Warncke 1992: 49 (map); Ascher and Pickering 2018 (Alborz, Mazandaran, Qazvin, Tehran).

Material examined

East Azerbaijan: 10 km E Shabeslar, 1540 m, 19.VI.2010, (1 ♀, 7 ♂), leg. M. Halada [PCMS]. Gilan: 15 km SE Tutkabon, 1100 m, 9.VI.2014, (2 ♀), leg. J. Halada [PCMS]; Tulkabon near Roodbar, 16.VI.2010, (1 ♂), leg. M. Halada [PCMS]. Fars: 10 km E Kazerum, 1990 m, 23.V.2014, (2 ♀, 2 ♂), leg. J. Halada [PCMS]. Golestan: 70 km E Minudasht, 1050 m, 12.VI.2010, (2 ♀, 97 ♂), leg. M. Halada [PCMS]. Kerman: 30 km S Sirjan, 1730 m, 7.VI.2010, (21 ♂), leg. M. Halada [PCMS]; Deh Bakri, 1640 m, 3.VI.2010, (1 ♂), leg. M. Halada [PCMS]; 8 km N Bardsir, 2050 m, 6.VI.2010, (1 ♂), leg. M. Halada [PCMS]; 25 km E Jiroft (Mijan), 1650 m, 27.V.2014, (1 ♀, 1 ♂), leg. M. Halada [PCMS]. Razavi Khorasan: Gerirud[=Tedzhen] River, Khorasan, 9.IV.1898, (1 ♀), leg. N. Zarudny [ZISP]. West Azerbaijan: Serou, 1650 m, 28.V.2010, (1 ♀), leg. M. Halada [PCMS].

Distribution

Europe (north to 63°), North Africa, Turkey, Iran (Alborz, *East Azerbaijan, *Fars, *Gilan, *Golestan, *Kerman, Mazandaran, Qazvin, *Razavi Khorasan, Tehran, *West Azerbaijan), Pakistan, Israel, Central Asia, Mongolia, Russia (east to Yakutia), China (Xinjiang), India (Assam, Sikkim).

Sphecodes haladai Warncke, 1992

Material examined

Kerman: 20 km E Ghobria, 1780 m, 5.VI.2010, (1 ♀), leg. M. Halada [PCMS].

Distribution

*Iran (Kerman), Central Asia.

Sphecodes longulus Hagens, 1882

Published records

Ascher and Pickering 2018 (Zanjan).

Material examined

East Azerbaijan: Tavriz[=Tebriz], 6.VI.1914, (1 ♀), leg. Andrievskiy [ZISP].

Distribution

Europe (north to Finland, Sweden, Denmark and England), Turkey, Iran (*East Azerbaijan, Zanjan), Syria, Central Asia, China (Gansu, Shanxi, Hebei, Inner Mongolia), Russia (east to Far East), Japan (Hokkaido, Kyushu, Honshu, Okinawa).

Sphecodes majalis Pérez, 1903

Published records

Ascher and Pickering 2018 (Alborz).

Material examined

Hamadan: 100 km NE Hamadan, 2100 m, 22.V.1975, (1 ♂), leg. Y. Ressle [PCMS]. Lorestan: Dorud, Laninabad, 670 m, 11.V.2016, (1 ♀), leg. M. Kafka [PCMS]. West Azerbaijan: Serou, 1650 m, 28.V.2010, (3 ♂), leg. M. Halada [PCMS]; Ilam pr. Ada Man, Dinar Gaouh, 1830 m, 12.V.2016, (2 ♀, 3 ♂), leg. M. Kafka [PCMS].

Distribution

Europe (north to the Netherlands), Russia (European part), North Africa, Caucasus, Turkey, Iran (Alborz, *Hamadan, *Lorestan, *West Azerbaijan).

Sphecodes monilicornis (Kirby, 1802)

Published records

Warncke 1992: 44 (map); Ascher and Pickering 2018 (Alborz, East Azerbaijan, Mazandaran, Zanjan).

Material examined

East Azerbaijan: Sis, 10 km E Shabeslar, 1540 m, 19.VI.2010, (1 ♂), leg. M. Halada [PCMS]. Fars: Pab E Neyriz, 2060 m, 18.V.1978, (1 ♀), leg. K. Warncke [PCMS]; 15 km SE Sarvestan, 1800 m, 17.V.1978, (1 ♀), leg. M. Kraus [PCMS]. Gilan: Tulkabon near Roodbar, 16.VI.2010, (2 ♂), leg. M. Halada [PCMS]; 15 km SE Tulkabon, 1100 m, 9.VI.2014, (1 ♀), leg. M. Halada [PCMS]. Golestan: 70 km E Minudasht, 1050 m, 12.VI.2010, (1 ♀), leg. M. Halada [PCMS]. Kerman: 50 km N Sabzavaran, 2170 m, 24.V.1978, (1 ♀, 1 ♂), leg. K. Warncke [PCMS]; 25 km E Jiroft (Mijan), 1650 m, 27.V.2014, (1 ♀, 3 ♂), leg. J. Halada [PCMS]; 40 km S Sirjan, 1870 m, 29.V.2014, (6 ♂), leg. J. Halada [PCMS]. Kohgiluyeh and Boyer-Ahmad: Kuh Gol near Sisakht, 9.VI.2010, (1 ♀), leg. M. Halada [PCMS]. Mazandaran: 10 km S Chaloos, 380 m, 15.VI.2010, (5 ♀, 21 ♂), leg. M. Halada [PCMS]; 20 km S Amoi, 430 m, 6.VI.2014, (1 ♂), leg. J. Halada [PCMS]. North Khorasan: 10 km W Raz, Kopet Dagh, 1200 m, 27.V.2014, (1 ♀, 1 ♂), leg. J. Halada [PCMS]. Sistan and Baluchestan: Khash, Iranshekhr, 21.V.1955, (1 ♀), leg. D. Steinberg [ZISP]. South Khorasan: Birjand, 18.VI.1896, (1 ♂), leg. N. Zarudny [ZISP].

Distribution

Europe (north to 64°), North Africa, Caucasus, Turkey, Iran (Alborz, East Azerbaijan, *Fars, *Gilan, *Golestan, *Kerman, *Kohgiluyeh and Boyer-Ahmad, Mazandaran, *North Khorasan, *Sistan and Baluchestan, *South Khorasan, Zanjan), Pakistan, Central Asia, Mongolia, China (Heilongjiang), Russia (east to Far East), India (Jammu, Kashmir).

Sphecodes olivieri Lepeletier de Saint Fargeau, 1825

Published records

Warncke 1992: 46 (map); Ascher and Pickering 2018 (Hamadan, Isfahan, Tehran).

Material examined

Golestan: 70 km E Minudasht, 1050 m, 12.VI.2010, (1 ♀, 3 ♂), M. Halada [PCMS]. Kerman: Jupar, 1900 m, 1.VI.2010, (1 ♀), leg. M. Halada [PCMS]; Raziabad, 1160 m, 4.VI.2010, (2 ♂), leg. M. Halada [PCMS]; 20 km E Ghobria, 1780 m, 5.VI.2010, (2 ♀, 6 ♂), leg. M. Halada [PCMS]; 8 km N Bardsir, 2050 m, 6.VI.2010, (1 ♀, 3 ♂), leg. M. Halada [PCMS]; 30 km S Sirjan, 1730 m, 7.VI.2010, (3 ♂), leg. M. Halada [PCMS]. Khuzestan: Half Tapeh, 300 km N di Abadan, Canale Dario, 30.VI.1965, (2 ♂), leg. Giordani Soika, Mavromoustakis [PCMS].

Distribution

South Europe, Russia (South of European part), North Africa, Caucasus, Turkey, Iran (*Golestan, Hamadan, Isfahan, *Kerman, *Khuzestan, Tehran), Pakistan, Israel, Arabian Peninsula, Central Asia, China (Gansu, Xinjiang), India (Gujarat).

Sphecodes pectoralis Morawitz, 1876

Material examined

Razavi Khorasan: ”Khorasan” , 3-4.VIII.1901, (1 ♀), leg. N. Zarudny [ZISP].

Distribution

*Iran (Razavi Khorasan), Central Asia, China (Gansu, Xinjiang).

Sphecodes pellucidus Smith, 1845

Published records

Ascher and Pickering 2018 (Isfahan, Kermanshah, Mazandaran, Tehran).

Material examined

East Azerbaijan: Sis, 10 km E Shabeslar, 1540 m, 19.VI.2010, (15 ♂), leg. M. Halada [PCMS]. Gilan: 15 km SE Tutkabon, 1100 m, 9.VI.2014, (1 ♀), leg. J. Halada [PCMS]. Kerman: Jupar, 1900 m, 1.VI.2010, (1 ♀), leg. M. Halada [PCMS]; 20 km E Ghobria, 1780 m, 5.VI.2010, (8 ♂), leg. M. Halada [PCMS]. West Azerbaijan: Serou, 1650 m, 28.V.2010, (1 ♀), leg. M. Halada [PCMS].

Distribution

Europe (north to 66°), North Africa, Turkey, Iran (*East Azerbaijan, Isfahan, Kermanshah, Mazandaran, Tehran), Central Asia, Mongolia, Russia (east to Far East), China (Gansu, Xinjiang, Sichuan).

Sphecodes pinguiculus Pérez, 1903

Published records

Blüthgen 1924: 509, as Sphecodes persicus; Warncke 1992: 52 (map); Ascher and Pickering 2018 (Iran, without province).

Material examined

Fars: Monti steppici, 5 km N Di Persepolis, 6.VII.1965, (1 ♀), leg. Giordani Soika, Mavromoustakis [PCMS]. Hamadan: Hamadan, 10.VIII.1964, (1 ♂), leg. G. Bohart [PCMS]. Khuzestan: Half Tapeh, 300 km N di Abadan, Canale Dario, 30.VI.1965, (1 ♀), leg. Giordani Soika, Mavromoustakis [PCMS]. Tehran: Elburz, Pulour, 22 km N di Ab Ali, 11.VII.1965, (1 ♀), leg. Giordani Soika, Mavromoustakis [PCMS].

Distribution

South Europe, North Africa, Turkey, Israel, Iran (*Fars, Hamadan, *Khuzestan, Tehran), Central Asia, Mongolia, China (Gansu, Inner Mongolia), Russia (east to Buryatia), Cape Verde Islands.

Sphecodes puncticeps Thomson, 1870

Published records

Ascher and Pickering 2018 (Alborz, Hamadan, Tehran).

Material examined

East Azerbaijan: Sis, 10 km E Shabeslar, 1540 m, 19.VI.2010, (1 ♀, 13 ♂), leg. M. Halada [PCMS]. Fars: 10 km E Kazerum, 1990 m, 23.V.2014, (1 ♀), leg. J. Halada [PCMS]; Dasht Arjan, 2040 m, 6.V.2016, (1 ♀), leg. M. Kafka [PCMS].

Distribution

Europe (north to Finland and Sweden), North Africa, Turkey, Iran (Alborz, *East Azerbaijan, *Fars, Hamadan, Tehran), Israel, Central Asia, Mongolia, Russia (east to Far East).

Sphecodes reticulatus Thomson, 1870

Published records

Ascher and Pickering 2018 (Alborz).

Material examined

No material examined.

Distribution

Turkey, Iran (Alborz), Central Asia, Russia (east to Irkutsk Prov.).

Sphecodes rubicundus Hagens, 1875

Material examined

West Azerbaijan: Serou, 1650 m, 28.V.2010, (1 ♀), leg. M. Halada [PCMS].

Distribution

Europe (north to 56°), Russia (European part), North Africa, Caucasus, Turkey, *Iran (West Azerbaijan).

Sphecodes rufiventris (Panzer, 1798)

Material examined

Fars: 10 km E Kazerum, 1990 m, 23.V.2014, (2 ♀), leg. J. Halada [PCMS]. Gilan: 15 km SE Tutkabon, 1100 m, 9.VI.2014, (1 ♂), leg. J. Halada [PCMS]. Mazandaran: 15 km S Alamdeh, 530 m, 7.VI.2014, (1 ♂), leg. J. Halada [PCMS].

Distribution

Europe (north to 57°), North Africa, Turkey, *Iran (Fars, Mazandaran), Central Asia, Russia (east to Khakass Republic).

Sphecodes saxicolus Warncke, 1992

Material examined

Kerman: Zurabad, 3.IV.1898, (1 ♀), leg. N. Zarudny [ZISP].

Distribution

*Iran (Kerman), Central Asia.

Sphecodes scabricollis Wesmael, 1835

Published records

Ascher and Pickering 2018 (Mazadaran).

Material examined

No material examined.

Distribution

Europe (north to southern England and Latvia), Caucasus, Turkey, Iran (Mazadaran), Central Asia, China (Heilongjiang, Liaoning, Beijing, Shaanxi, Qinghai, Zhejiang), Russia (east to Far East), South Korea, Japan (Hokkaido, Honshu, Shikoku, Kyushu), India (Tamil Nadu).

Sphecodes schenckii Hagens, 1882

Published records

Warncke 1992: 48 (map); Bogusch and Straka 2012: 17 (Iran, without province); Ascher and Pickering 2018 (Alborz).

Material examined

No material examined.

Remark

We examined some specimens determined by K. Warncke, P. Bogusch, J. Starka and M. Schwarz from Iran deposited in PCMS and concluded that Sphecodes schenckii has been confused with S. tadschicus Blüthgen in Popov, 1935. The specimen recorded from Alborz Province (Ascher and Pickering 2018) probably also belongs to S. tadschicus Blüthgen in Popov, 1935. Nevertheless records of this species in north-western provinces of Iran are certain in the future as it is known from Caucasus and Turkey.

Distribution

Europe (north to Germany), Russia (European part), Caucasus, Turkey, Iran (?), Israel.

Sphecodes spinulosus Hagens, 1875

Published records

Ascher and Pickering 2018 (Alborz, Mazandaran).

Material examined

Lorestan: 10 km Dorud, 1520 m, 27.V.2014, (1 ♀), leg. J. Halada [PCMS].

Distribution

Europe (north to 56°), North Africa, Turkey, Iran, Central Asia, Russia (east to Altai).

Sphecodes tadschicus Blüthgen in Popov, 1935

Sphecodes schenkii: Warncke 1992: 48, part.; Bogusch and Straka 2012: 17, part.

Material examined

East Azerbaijan: Sis, 10 km E Shabeslar, 1540 m, 19.VI.2010, (1 ♂), leg. M. Halada [PCMS]. Gilan: 15 km SE Tutkabon, 1100 m, 9.VI.2014, (1 ♀), leg. J. Halada [PCMS]. Golestan: 70 km E Minudasht, 1050 m, 12.VI.2010, (2 ♀, 1 ♂), leg. M. Halada [PCMS]. Semnan: Chashm, 2232 m, 5-7.VII.2011, (1 ♂), leg. A. Timokhov [ZISP]. Mazandaran: Bastam, 27.VI.1965, (1 ♀), leg. Matile [PCMS]; Damavand, 2800 m, 7-8.VII.2011, (1 ♀), leg. A. Timokhov [ZISP]; 20 km S Amol, 430 m, 6.VI.2014, (1 ♀), J. Halada [PCMS]. Yazd: Sanij, 1-4.VI.2011, (1 ♂), leg. A. Timokhov [ZISP].

Distribution

*Iran, Central Asia.

Discussion

Iran is a mostly mountainous country, with a landscape dominated by mountain ranges that separate various basins or plateaux from one another. A great variety of terrestrial ecosystems are situated on the territory of Iran: desert, semi-desert, steppe, forest steppe, forests and woodlands. However, dry biotopes occupy the majority of the Country and only 7% of the surface area is forested (most forest is found on the mountain slopes). Landscape and biotope diversity have a great effect on the diversity of bees, observable in the Sphecodes fauna of Iran, which includes forest species of temperate zoneas well as steppe and desert species of subtropics and endemic mountain species.

The majority of the Sphecodes fauna of Iran is formed by 14 widespread species, distributed from Europe to West Siberia or even to the Russian Far East and Japan: These are S. albilabris, S. alternatus, S. crassus, S. ephippius, S. gibbus, S. longulus, S. monilicornis, S. pellucidus, S. pinguiculus, S. puncticeps, S. reticulatus, S. rufiventris, S. scabricollis, and S. spinulosus. Some of these species (S. ephippius, S. reticulatus, S. scabricollis, S. crassus) occur in the mountains of Iran where their ranges follow their host ranges from the temperate zone of Palaearctic region. Sphecodes pinguiculus is distributed in steppe and desert zones of the Palaearctic region and does not occur above mountain steppe in Iran. Such species as S. alternatus, S. monilicornis, S. pellucidus, S. albilabris, S. gibbus, S. longulus, and S. puncticeps are widespread from north to south of Palaearctic region and occur in different native zones from forest to desert. Sphecodes majalis, S. croaticus and S. rubicundus are steppe species, distributed in central and south Europe and reaching north-western Iran through Turkey and the Caucasus. Sphecodes haladai, S. pectoralis, S. saxicolus and S. tadschicus are desert and steppe Irano-Turanian species distributed in Central Asia and Iran. Sphecodes anatolicus is a rare mountain species known from Mediterranean and Caucasian Regions to Central Asia. Sphecodes olivieri is widespread in semi-desert and desert of the Western Palaearctic. Sphecodes ebmeri sp. n. is a mountain edemic of Elbrus which also could be found in mountain Turkey and the Caucasus.

In total, 25 species of Sphecodes are recorded from Iran. This is distinctly less in comparison with the adjacent fauna of Turkey, Caucasus and Central Asia (Table 1). However this number will probably increase at least by a third and could be richer owing to eleven Western Palaearctic species which could be found in Iran: S. cristatus, S. hakkariensis, S. ferruginatus, S. nomioidis, S. dusmeti, S. niger, S. nurekensis, S. intermedius, S. armeniacus, S. crassanus, and S. geoffrellus. There are some species distributed in southern Europe, Turkey and the Caucasus that could be found in north-western Iran, whereas species mostly distributed in Central Asia could be recorded in central and eastern Iran. Because of these species the Iranian fauna of Sphecodes may be more diverse than those of Turkey or Central Asia.

List of Sphecodes species recorded in Iran, Turkey, Caucasus and Central Asia.

Sphecodes species Iran Turkey Caucasus Central Asia
1 Sphecodes albilabris (Fabricius, 1793) + + + +
2 S. alternatus Smith, 1853 + + + +
3 S. anatolicus Warncke, 1992 + + + +
4 *S. armeniacus Warncke, 1992 + +
5 S. barbatus Blüthgen, 1923 +
6 *S. crassanus Warncke, 1992 +
7 S. crassus Thomson, 1870 + + + +
8 *S. cristatus Hagens, 1882 + + +
9 S. croaticus Meyer, 1922 + + + +
10 *S. dusmeti Blüthgen, 1924 + +
11 S. ebmeri Astafurova & Proshchalykin, sp. n. +
12 S. ephippius (Linné, 1767) + + + +
13 *S. ferruginatus Hagens, 1882 + + +
14 *S. geoffrellus (Kirby, 1802) + + +
15 S. gibbus (Linnaeus, 1758) + + + +
16 *S. hakkariensis Warncke, 1992 + +
17 S. haladai Warncke, 1992 + +
18 S. hyalinatus Hagens, 1882 + +
19 *S. intermedius Blüthgen, 1923 + + +
20 S. longulus Hagens, 1882 + + + +
21 S. majalis Pérez, 1903 + + +
22 S. miniatus Hagens, 1882 + +
23 S. monilicornis (Kirby, 1802) + + + +
24 *S. niger Hagens, 1874 + +
25 *S. nomioidis Pesenko, 1979 +
26 *S. nurekensis Warncke, 1992 +
27 S. olivieri Lepeletier de Saint Fargeau, 1825 + + + +
28 S. pectoralis Morawitz, 1876 + +
29 S. pellucidus Smith, 1845 + + + +
30 S. pesenkoi Astafurova & Proshchalykin, 2018 +
31 S. pinguiculus Pérez, 1903 + + + +
32 S. pseudofasciatus Blüthgen, 1925 + +
33 S. puncticeps Thomson, 1870 + + + +
34 S. reticulatus Thomson, 1870 + + + +
35 S. rubicundus Hagens, 1875 + + +
36 S. ruficrus (Erichson, 1835) + +
37 S. rufiventris (Panzer, 1798) + + + +
38 S. sandykachis Astafurova & Proshchalykin, 2018 +
39 S. saxicolus Warncke, 1992 + +
40 S. scabricollis Wesmael, 1835 + + + +
41 S. schenckii Hagens, 1882 + + +
42 S. schwarzi Astafurova & Proshchalykin, 2015 +
43 S. spinulosus Hagens, 1875 + + + +
44 S. tadschicus Blüthgen, 1935 + +
45 S. trjapitzini Astafurova & Proshchalykin, 2018 +
46 S. turanicus Astafurova & Proshchalykin, 2017 +
47 S. zangherii Noskiewicz, 1931 +
Total: 25 34 29 36

Acknowledgments

We are grateful to Fritz Gusenleitner for help during our visit to Austria, and Andrew Grace for checking the English. We also wish to thank Michael Ohl, Arkady Lelej, and Rodrigo Gonçalves, who reviewed the manuscript and helped to improve this text. This investigation was supported by the Russian Funds for Basic Research (grant numbers 16–04–00197 and 17–04–00259) and the State Research Project (АААА-А17–117030310210–3).

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