World’s largest bee found in Indonesia. The species was thought to be extinct

World’s largest bee found in Indonesia. The species was thought to be extinct

The world’s largest bee, which until now was thought to be extinct, has been found on one of Indonesia’s islands. Megachile pluto bees are really big – they can reach the size of an adult’s thumb.

Scientists believed for nearly 40 years that a species of bee Megachile pluto extinct. Fortunately, the giant bee has not disappeared. A female of the world’s largest bee species was found on one Indonesian islandoł.

Bees of the species Megachile pluto reach the size of an adult’s thumb. Are about four times the size of a honeybee. The wingspan of the giant bee can reach up to 6 centimetersow, making representatives of this species the largest bees in the world.

The species was first described by British naturalist and explorer Alfred Russel Wallace'in 1858. For this reason, the insects are sometimes referred to as the „The giant bee Wallace'a”.

Bees of this species were last seen in 1981. Entomologist Adam Messner found them on three islands in Indonesia, in an archipelago called the Moluccas PoNorth. Since then, there has been no information on this species.

In early January, the teamoł scientistsoIn followed in the footsteps of Wallace's profinding representatives of a rare species. And it was successful. A female was caught on one of the islands, whichora was measured, photographed and released into the wild.

– A glimpse of this „flying bulldog” was absolutely breathtaking. We were not in the ogole sure whether these insects still exist. It was amazing to see how beautiful and large this species is. I can still hear the sound of its giant wings as the insect flew over my head – said Clay Bolt, a photographer whoory documented the rediscovery „Wallace's bees”.

These bees live in termite moundsow. It was in one such moundoin found a specimen of. Females, with the help of a large mouth apparatus, dig tunnels in mounds. The tunnels these insects cover with the resin of the surrounding trees to protect themselves from attack by the builders of the structure, the termiteow.

The discovery on Indonesian islands of a species thatory was thought to be extinct, raising hopes that the region’s forests are still home to one of the rarest and most sought-after insectsoin the world.