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Short description: Tribe of bees

Rhathymus sp Female.jpg
Rhathymus sp. (female)
Scientific classification e
Domain: Eukaryota
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Apidae
Subfamily: Apinae
Tribe: Rhathymini
Lepeletier, 1841

The Rhathymini are a tribe of kleptoparasitic apid bees ("cuckoo bees").[1][2]


The Rhathymini consists of bees typically moderate to large in size, ranging 13-28 mm body length.[3]

Visually, scholars have compared their appearance to that of vespid wasps (especially Polistes), or the giant species of the bee genus Nomada.[3]


As a kleptoparasitic species, the Rhathymini forego the typical pollination process common amongst bee species to feed their offspring, and instead lay their eggs wtihin the nests already provisioned by other bee species.[1]

Rhathymini have been documented to display aggression toward other bee ecosystems, including documented instances of attacking the nests of other bees.[1][4]



  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Martins, Aline C.; Luz, David R.; Melo, Gabriel A. R. (July 2018). "Palaeocene origin of the N eotropical lineage of cleptoparasitic bees E ricrocidini‐ R hathymini ( H ymenoptera, A pidae)" (in en). Systematic Entomology 43 (3): 510–521. doi:10.1111/syen.12286. ISSN 0307-6970. 
  2. Michener, Charles D. (2007) (in en). The Bees of the World. Johns Hopkins University Press. ISBN 978-0-8018-8573-0. 
  3. 3.0 3.1 Engel, Michael S.; Engel, Michael S.; Michener, Charles D.; Rightmyer, Molly G. (2004). "The Cleptoparasitic Bee Tribe Rhathymini (Hymenoptera: Apidae): Description of a New Genus and a Tribal Review". Journal of Hymenoptera research 13: 1–12. 
  4. Ayala, Ricardo; Hinojosa-Díaz, Ismael A.; Armas-Quiñonez, Ana Gabriela (2019-11-18). "A new species of Rhathymus Lepeletier amp; Serville, 1828 (Hymenoptera: Apidae: Rhathymini) from Guatemala". Zootaxa 4700 (1): zootaxa.4700.1.7. doi:10.11646/zootaxa.4700.1.7. ISSN 1175-5334. PMID 32229995. 

Wikidata ☰ Q3429295 entry