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Lasioglossum / sweat Bee

Family: Halictidae

Genus: Lasioglossum

Common Name: Sweat Bee


Physical Appearance

They range in color from dark brown or grey to black metallic; some species have banding on the abdomen.


The female carries pollen in a brush of specialized hairs, called scopa, on each hind leg.



The common name of Sweat Bee derives from their reported attraction to human perspiration.

Although they are the most abundant species in many habitats, due to their small size and drab coloring, Lasioglossum can often be overlooked or not recognized as bees.


Females of all Lasioglossum species mate before hibernating for the winter, emerging in spring ready to found new nests of offspring.


Many Lasioglossum species are annually social, the females of annual colonies being loosely divided into nesting, egg-laying, and foraging duties.


Whether solitary or social, most Lasioglossum species have multiple generations of offspring from spring through summer.


True generalists, Lasioglossum species visit a wide variety of flowers for pollen and nectar, and, given the opportunity, are significant pollinators of many crop plants.


Size: Very small slender bees, some species measuring less than 1/4 inch in length.



This is a very large and widespread genus of roughly 1800 species worldwide, with a presence on every continent. Lasioglossum are abundant throughout the regions of North America.


Number of species in North America

More than 400


Emergence Time
Early spring through summer


Nesting Habit
Ground nesting; there may be multiple generations of offspring throughout the spring and summer season. 


Pollinated Garden Crops Include



Additional Flowers Visited in Natural Areas

Hydrophyllum (waterleaf)
Prosopis (mesquite)
Psorothamnus (dalea, smoketree)
Spiraea (steeplebush, meadowsweet)

Visited Plants

Amelanchier / Serviceberry

Amorpha / False Indigo

Arctostaphylos / Manzanita

Asclepias / Milkweed

Bidens / Beggarticks

Ceanothus / Wild Lilac

Chamerion / Fireweed

Chrysothamnus / Rabbitbrush

Clarkia / Clarkia

Cleome / Spiderflower

Coreopsis / Tickseed

Cucurbita / Gourd

Dalea / Prairie Clover

Erigeron / Fleabane

Erigonum / Buckwheat

Eryngium / Eryngo

Eschscholzia / California Poppy

Eutrochium / Joe-Pye Weed

Geranium / Wild Geranium

Grindelia / Gumweed

Helianthus / Sunflower

Larrea / Creosote Bush

Monarda / Beebalm

Nepeta / Catmint

Penstemon / Beardtongue

Phacelia / Scorpionweed

Prunus / Plum

Pycnanthemum / Mountainmint

Ratibida / Prairie Coneflower

Rhododendron / Rhododendron

Rosa / Rose

Rudbeckia / Coneflower

Salix / Willow

Scrophularia / Figwort

Solidago / Goldenrod

Sphaeralcea / Globe Mallow

Symphyotrichum / Aster

Vaccinium / Blueberry

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