Taxonomy and pollination ecology of Bombus rufofasciatus (Hymenoptera: Apidae) from the Indian Himalaya

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ABSTRACT

Bombus rufofasciatus SMITH is a Tibetan species, widely distributed in the Oriental region. It is a medium tongued species abundant in both the north-east and north-west Indian Himalaya, covering an altitude range from 2400 to 4200 m. Because of its abundance and very wide distribution, it is associated with a sizeable number of host plants. Males and workers are similar in colour pattern, but the queen is a little different. The species shows a preference for highaltitude mountain slopes and is found in abundance in the open meadows of Affarwatt, Sheeshnag, Daksum, the Razdan Pass and the Lahul-spiti Valley of Himachal Pradesh in the north-western Himalaya. For preference it forages on Aconitum spp. (Ranunculaceae), Trifolium spp. (Papilionaceae), Cirsium spp. (Asteraceae) and certain members of Lamiaceae. Due emphasis has been laid on its detailed taxonomic descriptions, synonymy, host plants, pollination ecology, distribution pattern and illustrations. 51 food plants of this species have been recorded for the first time from the areas under study.

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Polish Journal of Entomology

Polskie Pismo Entomologiczne; The Journal of Polish Entomological Society

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