Identifying Females of Three Carder Bee Species of Genus Anthidium (Hymenoptera: Megachilidae) Using Chemical Compounds of Cuticle

Document Type : Original Article


Zoology department, faculty of science, Al-azhar university ,Egypt


Precise identification of Anthidium species as beneficial pollinators is vital for preserving and protecting them. The identification and quantification of cuticular chemical compounds during the present study were performed on a gas chromatography–mass spectrometry (GC/MS). GC/MS analysis indicate that the cuticular chemical profiles of the females of the three Anthidium species contains 42 chemical compounds. Fatty acid is the most diverse and abundant class (19 compounds) followed by hydrocarbons (6 compounds), glyceride (4 compounds), organosiloxane (3 compounds), alcohols (3 compounds), two ketones, two sterols and three unclassified compounds. Female A. amabile exclusively distinguished by having 10 compounds not found in the other two females, while female A. pullchelum distinguished by having two compounds and female A. testelatum by having one alcohol compound. The current investigation aimed to evaluate using chemical structure of insect cuticle (body wall) as taxonomic tool helping to identify females of three carder bee species of genus Anthidium. The obtained results found that there are qualitative and quantitative variations concerning chemical cuticular compounds among different females of species of genus Anthidium. The present study concluded that, chemical structure of insect cuticle can be used, side by side with morphological characters, as chemotaxonomic tool.


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