4954 N. Shamrock Place, Tucson, AZ 85705

Green Metallic/Sweat Bees

Family Halictidae

Green Metallic/ Sweat Bees

Life Cycle

Complete metamorphosis
The adult sweat bee will lay an egg in a burrow and collect pollen back for the larva to feed on once hatched.  Pupation occurs during the winter completing development their second year.  These solitary bees will live independently, not depending on a colony for their survival.


  • Diet: Adults feed on flower nectar.
  • Activity: Typically seen in summer.
  • Preferred Climate: Warm
  • Defense: Rarely sting but will if provoked
  • Cautions: Attracted to human and animal sweat
  • Home Invasion: Will infest yards if barren creating small mounds with an opening at the top. In some cases, large clusters will be created of these mounds as this solitary bee will often be living in large clusters (aggregations) when prime conditions exist. This can be intimidating to the homeowner.

Helpful Hints

  • Properly fertilize and water lawns promoting healthy turf.
  • Targeted insecticide treatment may be necessary if larger populations, aggregations occur to prevent the possibility of being stung.

Interesting Facts

Sweat bees received their name due to being attracted to human and animal sweat.  They will land on your body and collect sweat droplets.


Bee stings can produce different reactions, ranging from temporary pain and discomfort to a severe allergic reaction.

Nesting Sites

Nearly all sweat bees nest in the ground; a few nest in rotten wood.