Tetragonisca angustula behaviour

The entrance to a colony of Tetragonisca angustula stingless bees

A Tetragonisca angustula wax entrance to a natural nest in a wall cavity near Ribeirão Preto in São Paulo state, Brazil. Standing guards are on the wax entrance tube and hovering guards face the flight corridor leading to the entrance. Foragers returning with pollen loads and waste removing bees can be seen (Courtesy of Christoph Grüter).


Tetragonisca angustula entrance with standing and hovering guards


Tetragonisca angustula guard fighting with Lestrimelitta limao

A Lestrimelitta limao worker after killing a Tetragonisca angustula guard bee. The dead guard clamps its head onto a wing and the larger robber bee is unable to fly. L. limao is an important natural enemy of T. angustula colonies. Despite the smaller size, T. angustula guards aggressively attack L. limao workers.