Phylogenomics and historical biogeography of the cleptoparasitic bee genus Nomada (Hymenoptera: Apidae) using ultraconserved elements.Mol Phylogenet Evol. 2022 05; 170:107453.MP
The genus Nomada Scopoli (Hymenoptera: Apidae) is the largest genus of brood parasitic bees with nearly 800 species found across the globe and in nearly all biogeographic realms except Antarctica. There is no previous molecular phylogeny focused on Nomada despite their high species abundance nor is there an existing comprehensive biogeography for the genus. Using ultraconserved element (UCE) phylogenomic data, we constructed the first molecular phylogeny for the genus Nomada and tested the monophyly of 16 morphologically established species groups. We also estimated divergence dates using fossil calibration points and inferred the geographic origin of this genus. Our phylogeny recovered 14 of the 16 previously established species groups as monophyletic. The superba and ruficornis groups, however, were recovered as non-monophyletic and need to be re-evaluated using morphology. Divergence dating and historic biogeographic analyses performed on the phylogenetic reconstruction indicates that Nomada most likely originated in the Holarctic ∼ 65 Mya. Geodispersal into the southern hemisphere occurred three times: once during the Eocene into the Afrotropics, once during the Oligocene into the Neotropics, and once during the Miocene into Australasia. Geodispersal across the Holarctic was most frequent and occurred repeatedly throughout the Cenozoic era, using the De Geer, Thulean, and the Bering Land Bridges. This is the first instance of a bee using both the Thulean and De Geer land bridges and has implications of how early bee species dispersed throughout the Palearctic in the late Cretaceous and early Paleogene.