BioImages: The Virtual Field-Guide (UK)

Aculeata (aculeates: bees, wasps and ants)

Further Information

Lab. techniques Aculeates are a difficult group to identitify, even from specimens, but these are usually needed for certain identification, at least until you're reasonably expert with the group.

Specimens should be set with the legs pulled down away from the body to facilitate examination of the sides of the thorax. Try to ensure the leading edges of the hindwings are hooked onto the trailing edges of the forewings, as they are in life. The wings can be left in the vertical position, or positioned so they are flat, but should not be allowed to obscure the upper surface of the abdomen. Ideally, the jaws held open as the number of teeth is often important.

Sets of Photographs

These relate to individual finds ("biological records") of the organism.

Taxon Summary # images # photos # macrophotos Date Vice-county Country
Aculeata Imago 12 12 19 May 2006 Berks England
Aculeata Male imago 11 11 19 May 2006 Berks England
Aculeata Imago 8 8 11 Aug 2007 Oxon England
Aculeata Male imago 5 5 26 Mar 2005 Berks England
Aculeata 2 2 3 Apr 1977 North Hampshire England


Rank Taxon #subtaxa #photos #macrophotos #microphotos #refs
Superfamily APOIDEA (solitary and hive bees) 50 420 131 4 72
Superfamily CHRYSIDOIDEA (a superfamily of solitary wasps) 13 8 34   23
Superfamily FORMICOIDEA (ants) 21 19 39 5 48
Superfamily POMPILOIDEA (spider-hunting wasps) 3 18 17   5
Superfamily SPHECOIDEA (a superfamily of solitary wasps) 12 34 46   9
Superfamily VESPOIDEA (wasps) 10 114 23   44

Suggested Literature

Identification Works

BWARS: Species Accounts: BWARS: Species Accounts
BWARS: Species accounts: BWARS: Species accounts
Photos of Insects: Photos of Insects
Saunders, E., 1896 The Hymenoptera Aculeata of the British Islands
Willmer, P., 1985 Bees, Ants and Wasps: A key to genera of the British Aculeates
Cercle de Mycologie de Mons (Belgique): (Page perso de JJ. Wuilbaut): Cercle de Mycologie de Mons (Belgique): (Page perso de JJ. Wuilbaut)

Regional guides

Baldock, D.W., 2008 Bees of Surrey

BioInfo BioInfo ( has 83 general literature references to Aculeata (aculeates: bees, wasps and ants)

Aculeata may also be covered by literature listed under:

(living things)
(bees, wasps, ants, sawflies and parasitoid wasps)

BioInfo BioInfo ( has 941 feeding and other relationships of Aculeata (aculeates: bees, wasps and ants)

Creative Commons Licence
Unless otherwise expressly stated, all original material on the BioImages website by Malcolm Storey is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 UK: England & Wales Licence.