Project title: Nest Structure and Pollen Storage of the Eastern Carpenter Bee, Xylocopa virginica, in Rhode Island
Mentor: Steven R. Alm
Abstract: Nest structure, cell contents, and stored pollen of the Eastern carpenter bee, Xylocopa virginica, was studied to better understand the nesting and forage requirements of this native pollinator. Twenty eight nests in one 13’ 2×4 board from a barn located at URI’s East Farm were planed so that the nests were exposed and the contents (larvae, pupae, and pollen loaves) could be removed, weighed, and locations recorded. Twenty eight tunnels were measured and the average length was 15.43 ± 1.24 cm. The average width of a first-year tunnel was 1.32 ± 0.04 cm and a multi-year tunnel (used for more than one year) was 1.68 ± 0.03 cm. The average cell length was 1.77 ± 0.03 cm. The average number of pollen grains in a full loaf needed to sustain a single larva was 60,260,000 and the number of foraging trips require to complete a full loaf was 50.