Yellow faced bees: Hylaeus gliddenae
(Hymenoptera: [Apoidea:] Colletidae: Hylaeinae)
Profile prepared by Karl Magnacca, USGS-BRD, Kilauea Field Station
Hylaeus gliddenae is a large bee endemic to the island of Hawaii in Hawaii. It is distinguished by the unusual red abdomen. It is closely related to H. paradoxicus, differing by the presence of facial marks. It is known only from a single specimen collected in 1934.
Xerces Red List Status: Critically Imperiled (Possibly Extinct)
Canada – Species at Risk Act: N/A
Canada – provincial status: N/A
USA – Endangered Species Act: None
USA – state status: None
IUCN Red List: N/A
This species is extremely rare and possibly extinct.
Males: Abdomen dull red, remainder of body black; face with a U-shaped yellow mark and broad marks on the scape and mandible. Punctation of abdomen distinct.
Females: Unknown; may be indistinguishable from H. paradoxicus. Hylaeus gliddenae is larger and more robust than most Hawaiian species. It is a member of a group of species with distinct punctation of the abdomen, including H. anomalus and H. satelles. It is most similar to H. paradoxicus of the island of Hawaii, with which it shares the distinctive red abdomen. It is distinguished by the presence of facial marks, which are absent in H. paradoxicus, and slightly smaller size.
Hylaeus gliddenae was collected in 1934 and described in Daly and Magnacca (2003). Small females collected by Perkins and described (1899) as H. erythrodemas (later synonymized with H. paradoxicus) may actually be this species.
Like H. paradoxicus, H. gliddenae probably inhabits dry to mesic forests. The specific habitat of the single specimen cannot be determined from the locality label. It nests in wood.
Hylaeus gliddenae is only recorded from Kilauea. However, if it still exists it will probably be found in the area of Puu Waawaa and/or Pohakuloa like H. paradoxicus and other dry forest species.
The rarity of H. gliddenae and lack of knowledge about its requirements make it difficult to assess threats. Dry forest has been severely impacted by feral ungulates and fire, but this species has not been found in remnant habitat with other similar species. Some important conservation needs are to identify extant populations and document the continued existence of the species. All areas where H. gliddenae is likely to be found are protected under the auspices of the State of Hawaii, the National Park Service, or the U.S. Army, although they may not be actively managed for habitat conservation.
Daly, H. V., and K. N. Magnacca. 2003. Insects of Hawaii, Vol. 17: Hawaiian Hylaeus (Nesoprosopis) Bees (Hymenoptera: Apoidea). University of Hawaii Press, Honolulu. 234 pp.
Perkins, R. C. L. 1899. Hymenoptera, Aculeata. Pp. 1-115 in D. Sharp (ed.), Fauna Hawaiiensis, Vol. 1. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, United Kingdom.
Magnacca, K. N. 2005. Species Profile: Hylaeus gliddenae. In Shepherd, M .D., D. M. Vaughan, and S. H. Black (Eds). Red List of Pollinator Insects of North America. CD-ROM Version 1 (May 2005). Portland, OR: The Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation.