A new species of Mermiglossa from Kenya, with comments on the arrangement of Old World Panurginae (Hymenoptera: Andrenidae)

John S. Ascher, Michael S. Engel


A new species of the panurgine bee genus Mermiglossa Friese (Panurginae) is described and figured from females captured near Voi in the southern part of the former Coast Province, Kenya, a historical type locality for several bee species.  Mermiglossa voicola Ascher & Engel, new species, is distinguished from the only other species of the genus, M. rufa Friese from central Namibia.  The new species is readily identified due to its black rather than red metasoma and compound eyes slightly convergent above rather than parallel-sided.  The new species raises the total number of described bee species for Kenya to 343, extends the known distribution of its genus and subtribe from the Namib Desert of southwestern Africa to the western edge of the Nviri Desert of East Africa, and provides further evidence of extensive biogeographic connections between these disjunct xeric areas.  Recent changes in the family-group classification of Old World Panurginae are discussed in relation to recognition of Mermiglossina as a valid subtribe within an expanded tribe Panurgini also including the New World perditines.


Apoidea; Anthophila; Andrenidae; Panurginae; Panurgini; Mermiglossina; Mermiglossa

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.17161/jom.v0i75.6717


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