I cane across a small swarm of Stingless Bees (Trigona sp.) harvesting resin from the stem of a legume tree by a roadside one sunny afternoon. Unfortunately the tree was almost leafless and there were no signs of flowers and/or fruits. This made identification of the tree difficult. Also, this appeared to be the only tree along the road.
The tree secreted the resin in an effort to heal the wound on the bark. The bees came and took advantage of the situation as resin is needed in nest construction, maintenance and defense. These bees nest in cavities found in rotting tree trunks and branches as well as cavities found in walls.
Beeswax mixed with plant resin are used in the construction of egg-shaped pots used to store honey and pollen. Within these pots an egg is deposited. Once the egg hatches the larva will have enough food to last until the pupa turns into an adult bee.
20th May 2017
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