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Entomology (Study of Bugs)/Small Matalic Wasp or Bee


Small Wasp or Bee
Small Wasp or Bee  
Afternoon Ed,

Photographed this small 1/2" matalic looking wasp or bee on my passion flower.  It appeared to be eating aphids or small insects.  Can you provide the general name and the scientific name.

I live in Homosassa,FL --- Gulf side

Dear Ralph - Your bee appears to be one of the so-called 'sweat bees' in the family Halictidae; see for a fact sheet. Although they are small, their sting packs a mighty wallop. Fortunately, the effects are short-lived.

Hope this helps,

Entomology (Study of Bugs)

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Ed Saugstad


Will accept most questions in general entomology, including those related to medical entomology, taxonomy, ecology, arthropod surveillance, and pest management. If you are requesting a 'mystery bug' identification, PLEASE either attach an image to your question, or post an image on a web page (such as Flickr) so that I can look at it, as verbal descriptions frequently are insufficient for a definitive identification.


21 years in the U.S. Army as a medical entomologist; duties varied from surveillance of pest populations (including mosquitoes, cockroaches, ticks, and stored products pests) to conducting research on mosquito-virus ecological relationships and mosquito faunal studies. Ten years as a civilian analyst for the Department of Defense, primarily on distribution of vector-borne diseases worldwide. Limited experience on surveillance of agricultural insects in North Dakota and Indiana.

Entomological Society of America, West Virginia Entomological Society, Society for Vector Ecology, National Speleological Society, West Virginia Association for Cave Studies.

American Journal of Public Health, Contributions of the American Entomological Institute, Japanese Journal of Sanitary Zoology, Journal of Economic Entomology, Mosquito News, and Mosquito Systematics.

B.S. in entomology from North Dakota State University in 1963, M.S. in entomology from Purdue University in 1967.

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