The Sculptured Resin Bee is native to East Asia. It has colonized two continents: North America and Europe.


In 2008, the Sculptured Resin Bee was discovered for the first time in southern France. The bee was found in the small town of Allauch, not far from the port of Marseille. Most likely the bee came to Europe as a stowaway in ships. Only one year later, there was a second finding, this time from the area of Lake Maggiore in northwest Italy. Short time later, it was found in Switzerland. Then, the bee appeared north of the Alps, where several individuals were found in Zurich, Altdorf and on Lake Constance in southern Germany in 2015.

By now, the Sculptured Resin Bee has colonized many European countries. The busy bee is spreading westwards in Spain, and east to Austria, Slovenia, Hungary, Croatia, Serbia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Rumania and even on the Crimean Peninsula.

Within the last few years, we investigated the rapid spread of the Sculptured Resin Bee. Before the Sculptured Resin Bee appeared in Europe, no other putative invasive bee managed to spread and colonize large areas. DNA studies of the bee provided an exciting twist: The Sculptured Resin Bee started its triumphant march from several regions in Europe. The bee arrived in Europe not once, but several times. 

Further information on the dispersal behaviour of the Sculptured Resin Bee and our genetic studies can be found on the Publications page.

Are you particularly interested in the spread of the Sculptured Resin Bee in Eastern Europe? Our Serbian colleagues at the University of Belgrade represent their work on the species and show exciting figures of their research work.

The map was published as part of the Bila Dubaić & Lanner 2021 publication in the Bee World journal. Data basis were observations from literature and public databases until 2020.

The content described here has been drawn from international research. The sources of the primary literature can be found under the heading Literature.

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