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PAN-PACIFIC ENTOMOLOGIST 62(3), 1986, pp. 224-225 Scientific Note Arthropod Visitors at Washingtonia filifera (Wendl) Flowers 1 Although some species of palm are wind-pollinated, others are known to rely upon insects for pollination (Tomlinson, 1979, Ann. Rev. Ecol. Syst., 10:85-107; Blombery and Rodd, 1982, Palms, Angus and Robertson, London). It has not yet been determined which of these two systems is operative for the desert fan palm, Washingtonia filifera, of the Sonoran Desert. McClenaghan and Beauchamp (1986, Evolution, 40:315-322) speculated that the lack of genetic differentiation among W. filifera populations might be the result of insect, rather than wind, pollination. Lepesme (1947, Les insectes des palmiers, Rue de Toumon, Paris) listed 20 insect species associated with W. filifera but, with the exception of Dinapate wrightii, did not describe the relationship between the insects and the palms. A first step in ascertaining the mechanism of pollination is to determine which, if any, insects visit W. filifera flowers. On 20 and 21 July 1984, insects and other arthropods were observed or collected at inflorescences of three desert fan palms located in Palm Canyon, Riverside Co., Ca. Identifications of arthropods were made by the author, and Saul Frommer and Robert Wagner of the University of California at Riverside. These taxa are listed in Table 1 in decreasing frequency of occurrence. None of the species collected appeared in Lepesme’s (1947) list. 1 Supported by a grant from the Richard King Mellon Foundation to the Palm Springs Desert Museum. Table 1. Arthropods observed or collected on inflorescences of the desert fan palm, Washingtonia filifera. Listed in decreasing frequency of occurrence. Scientific name Common name Order Apis mellifera Honey bee Hymenoptera Polistes* Paper wasps Hymenoptera P. major P. apachus P. dorsalis Xylocopa californica California carpenter bee Hymenoptera Dermestidaef Hide beetles Coleoptera Forelius foetidus ant—no common name Hymenoptera Stratiomyidaef Soldier flies Diptera Pep sis sp. Tarantula hawks Hymenoptera Tripoxylon xantianum Mud dauber wasp Hymenoptera Alleculidaef Comb-clawed beetles Coleoptera Litoprosopus coachella Palm moth Lepidoptera Tachytes sp. Sand wasps Hymenoptera Prionyx parkeri Sand wasp Hymenoptera Megachile sp. Leafcutter bees Hymenoptera Salticidaef Jumping spiders Araneae * As a genus, the second most frequent visitor, t Arthropod could only be identified to the family level.

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Arthropod visitors at Washingtonia filifera (Wendl) flowers

J W Cornett
Pan-Pacific Entomologist 62(3): 224-225 (1986)

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