This is a summary of bee data from 4 fields from the Great Dismal Swamp National Wildlife Refuge and 4 fields from Nansemond National Wildlife Refuge collected in August 2008. Each field was sampled with 5 fluorescent yellow, 5 fluorescent blue, and 5 white 3.25 ounce bowl traps.
A complete table of the data is available from Leo Shapiro (firstname.lastname@example.org), Sam Droege (email@example.com), or the refuge biologist.
Below is a table of the site numbers and a brief site description followed by a table of results.
|5567||GDSNWR Site 1 (=Middle W-E)|
|5568||GDSNWR Site 2 (=Jericho N-S)|
|5569||GDSNWR Site 3 (=Hudnell W-E)|
|5570||GDSNWR Site 4 (=East N S-N)|
|5571||NNWR Site 1;Collectors' waypoint 042|
|5572||NNWR Site 2;Collectors' waypoint 041|
|5573||NWR Site 3;Collectors' waypoint 040|
|5574||NNWR Site 4;Collectors' waypoint 039|
|Species ||5567||5568||5569||5570||5571||5572||5573||5574||Grand Total|
|Lasioglossum viridatum group||1||1|
With the exception of the Svastra atripes, the Great Dismal Swamp sites are characterized by a fairly standard set of bee species, ones that are likely to be found in most fields. Of note is that these sites were within the interior of the refuge along woodland roads with a small amount of herbaceous growth along the sides. After leaf-out there are few to no bees found within woodlands and thus the low numbers here make a great deal of sense in the context of the landscape being largely a wooded one. A possible additional exception is Lasioglossum subviridatum, which is a species with a taxonomically difficult background and we aren't that certain about its distribution and commoness due to other, similar, species being confused with it in the past.
The Nansemond sites are quite the contrast. Here the habitat is almost entirely open fields in what appears to be an old military installation. There are more species and higher numbers of those species. Of note is a single Bombus auricomus, an uncommon bumblebee species which we see only very sporadically. As mentioned in other posts, the Lasioglossum versatum sensu Mitchell species is a distinct species which is in the process of being renamed due to a name mix-up. It is very characteristic of sandy, southern, coastal plain sites. The Melissodes comptoides and Svastra atripes are both indicators of good quality field habitat.
While these two refuge units clearly contrast in their species lists and abundance, that role could easily reverse in the spring when it would be very interesting to see what the Dismal Swamp forests had to offer in terms of bee diversity.
Great Dismal Swamp National Wildlife Refuge
Nansemond National Wildlife Refuge (the area in the center of the photo)