A team of biologists reports the sighting of Wallace, the world’s largest bee, after almost four decades.
The Global Wildlife Conservation discovered a single female Wallace’s giant bee (Megachile pluto). It was living inside a termites’ nest in a tree in the Indonesian islands of North Moluccas.
The discovery of the world’s biggest bee was part of the Search for Lost Species Program of the Global Wildlife Conservation. The team thought the giant may already be extinct.
The Wallace can grow up to an inch and a half in length and has a wingspan of two and a half inches. British explorer and naturalist Alfred Russel Wallace discovered the beetle-like bee in 1858.
After its discovery in 1981 by by entomologist Adam Messer, Wallace remained missing until its recent discovery. The discovery of it in 1991 never made to scientific journals.
In addition, it is a “large, black wasp-like insect, with immense jaws like a stag beetle,” as described by the team.
The team members spent four days looking into termites’ tree nests. Wallace are giant bees that can have powerful jaws to scrape bark of trees and burrow inside existing termite mounds.
Meanwhile, the team said its habitat is threatened to disappear because of deforestation, which is to be used for agricultural purposes in the area.
Later on, the team will be coordinating with the local authorities to address the issue.