mason bee

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Any member of the genera Anthocopa, Chalicodoma, Dianthidium, Heriades, Hoplitis, or Osmia, of the cosmopolitan family Megachilidae. The female collects soft, malleable building materials which are shaped at the nest site into durable structures. The nests may be inside existing cavities in timber, under stones, or may be built on exposed surfaces, e.g. rocks, or leaves and branches of woody plants. According to the bee species, the collected materials may be mud, pebbles, quartz chips, resin, or a mastic of chewed leaves or petals, or a combination of two or three of these substances.

Subjects: Zoology and Animal Sciences — Ecology and Conservation.

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