This is a genus of parasitic Megachilidae that parasitize other Megachilinae. Three subgenera, Dolichostelis Parker and Hurd, Protostelis Friese, and Stelis Panzer, are found in Florida. Michener (2001) considers all of these to be subgenera of the larger genus Stelis.
Hind tibia with an apical median tooth or tibial spine and a less prominent, rounded projection near apex of posterior margin of tibia; hind basitarsus unmodified…2
Base of propodeum vertical or sloping, rarely subhorizontal, without series of pits or such pits usually present only laterally, this zone with about same slope as metanotum; anterior surface of mesepisternum puncate, omaular carina absent…S. (Stelis s. str)
(Mitchell placed these in Stelis). These are cleptoparasites in nests of Megachile (Chelostomoides)
County Records: Alachua, Hardee, Highlands, Levy, Manatee, Marion, Miami-Dade, Santa Rosa
Locations: Bowling Green, Brandon
Notes: This species has a tortured history of misidentifications. For details, see Parker, F. D. and G. E. Bohart. 1979. Dolichostelis, a new genus of Parasitic Bees (Hymenoptera: Megachilidae). Journal of the Kansas Entomological Society 52(1): 138-153. The taxa called S. floridana is a form that has more extensive and darker red-orange markings than populations further to the north but there are intermediates. Their map shows it occuring throughout the peninsula but absent from the panhandle west of probably Lake City?.
(Mitchell and Hurd incorrectly placed these in Heterostelis). These are likely parasites of the genus Trachusa.
Smaller (10mm); mandibles shorter, 2nd tooth much nearer apex than to inner angle; tergum 6 regularly rounded…2
Terga 1 and 2 black medially…S. australis australis
Males have not been described for S. grossa
County Records: Alachua, Levy, Putnam, Volusia
Dates: May (1), August (1)
Notes: Thorp (1966) listed it for Florida from Volusia county.
County Records: Alachua, Citrus, Clay, Levy
Notes: This subspecies appears to be restricted to Florida. These two subspecies may represent nothing more a color cline according to Thorp (1966) but they have been found together. Possibly, coloration is dependent on local environmental conditions that affect the nesting larvae.
County Records: Alachua
Notes: Was described from Florida, Thorp (1966) and Hurd (1979) lists it also from Ft. Morgan, Alabama (Baldwin County). Probably occurs in north-central peninsula and in the panhandle. Photos are not yet available.
County Records: Collier, Sarasota
Locations: Corkscrew Swamp
Dates: January, March
Notes: Endemic to Florida, known only from the southwestern coastal region. Photos are not yet available.