Leaf-cutting Bee (Lithurgus apicalis)

Order: Hymenoptera (hy-men-OP-ter-a) (Info)
Family: Megachilidae
Genus: Lithurgus (li-THUR-jus) (Info)
Species: apicalis (a-pik-AY-liss) (Info)

Regional

This bug has been reportedly found in the following regions:

Phoenix, Arizona
Las Vegas, Nevada (2 reports)
Brooklyn, New York
Wickliffe, Ohio
Crane, Texas
Houston, Texas
Show all

Members' Notes:

1
positive
2
neutrals
1
negative
RatingContent
Neutral

On May 23, 2009, BarbMarch58 from Wickliffe, OH wrote:

For the first time in 20 years of outdoor gardening, I found the leafcutter bee feasting merrily on our Rudbeckia leaves (bloom time has not hit us yet in Wickliffe, OH). It was able to make fairly perfect circles in a number of leaves - and in quick order. I'm not happy to see these for my plants' health and certainly hope they don't sting humans.

Negative

On Mar 10, 2009, janiemae1 from Crane, TX wrote:

Not sure if this is the kind of leaf cutter bee we have , but it does do alot of damage to trees, shrubs, etc. I have not found anything to get rid of these guys. If anyone comes up with some way to kill, or repel, please pass it on. I hate these little guys!

Positive

On Dec 21, 2008, jvivier from Las Vegas, NV wrote:

The cutter-Bee is an infestation in Southern Nevada. It devastates
all trees or bushes with tender leaves or flowers. Many of my lagerstroemias (Crape Mirtyle ) have died for being deprived of most
of their leaves.
This bee is very difficult to kill because of its speed and I don't know
any chemical that can fight it.
Their action is simple: the bee cuts a first almost perfect circle of
leaf and takes it to the bottom of a hole in the trunk of a dead tree; this as food for the larvae it lays right after. Then it cuts another piece that it uses to obturate the hole to protect the larvae. I don't have a picture of a ravaged tree but next summer I will be spoiled for choice.

Neutral

On Oct 16, 2006, kennyso from Markham, ON (Zone 5b) wrote:

If I'm not mistaken, these bees do not do damage [not to rose at least] but they will land on a rose leaf (not the petals) and cut a perfect circle in the middle of the leaf. Interesting bug, but I'm not sure I would want my rosees to have leaves with a circle in each! They do absolutely NO harm to the whole plant's health