Taxonomy and food plants of Bombus simillimus SMITH (Hymenoptera: Apidae) from the Indian Himalaya

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Abstract

Bombus simillimus SMITH is a west Himalayan species, known only from Pakistan and India. In the Indian Himalaya this species is restricted to Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand. So far, it has never been recorded from other regions. Its females (workers) can be recognized by the chocolate brown pubescence of the metasomal terga 1 and 2. The colour pattern of the queen is very distinct, with the whole body coloured black except for the last two metasomal terga, which are brick-red. In Kashmir Himalaya it is widespread around the lower mountain coniferous forest and was found foraging heavily on Trifolium pratense, Lavatera cashmeriana, Carduus spp. and Cirsium spp. Being very common and having a very wide distributional range, it is associated with a sizeable number of host plants. Due emphasis has been laid on its detailed taxonomic descriptions, synonymy, host plants, distribution pattern and illustration. Thirty-five food plants of this species have been recorded from the study areas.

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Polish Journal of Entomology

Polskie Pismo Entomologiczne; The Journal of Polish Entomological Society

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