Emergence patterns of a natural population of Osmia lignaria subsp. lignaria Say were monitored during a 5-yr period (2003–2007) in relation to air temperature, bloom of eastern redbud (Cercis canadensis L.), and emergence of the parasitoid Chysura kyrae Krombein. Bee cocoons were placed in gelatin capsules and overwintered within shelters in their natural habitat. Mean emergence of female O. l. lignaria was observed at ≈2 d after redbud bloom began; mean male emergence was ≈ 1 wk earlier than for females and was nearly identical to that of C. kyrae. Horticultural models used to predict budburst for several tree species were evaluated with respect to redbud bloom and O. l. lignaria emergence. Each model indicated that both sexes of the bee and redbud had similar chill unit requirements. Differences in emergence and bloom dates were attributed to the different requirements for growing degree hours (GDHs) after chilling requirements were met. The close phenological relationship observed between eastern redbud and bee emergence suggests an important role for this common understory tree in the early nesting success of O. l. lignaria.
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