n African Entomology - Sociality in the allodapine bee genus : insights from two Malagasy species

Volume 14, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 1021-3589



The social organization of allodapine bees varies widely, both between and within species, providing considerable material for comparative approaches to studying the evolution of sociality. Within the Allodapini, is the sister clade to all other extant allodapine species and is also morphologically the most primitive. Based on studies of two African species of , sociality has been assumed to be an ancestral trait for the entire tribe. We tested this assumption with the study of two species from Madagascar. Using nest content and dissection data, the social organization of two previously unstudied allodapine species, Ramena sp. and , were examined. The data suggest Ramena sp. and are both social, and although their social behaviour is less complex than the African species, phylogenetic conservatism is present within the . The form of sociality exhibited by is more primitive than that of other allodapines, with a more complex sociality possibly contributing to the success of these other allodapine clades.

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