Almost everyone has noticed the round holes nearly a half inch across cut in the leaves of many plants. Rose leaves very frequently show this mutilation. The casual observer is usually without information, however, as to how it all comes about unless he has chanced to see a leafcutter bee providing herself with one of the round oval pieces of leaf she uses in lining a burrow in rotten wood or in hollow plant stems. One must watch quickly and closely if he is to see this performance. With her sharp mandibles this agile bee hastily scissors out the leaf disk and quickly catching it up flies away with it. Several cells are placed end to end in these burrows and provisioned with a paste of pollen and nectar. One egg is deposited in each cell where the larva makes its full development, then pupates and awaits the proper time for its emergence.
Proceedings of the Iowa Academy of Science
©1948 Iowa Academy of Science, Inc.
Jaques, H. E.
"A list of the Leafcutting Bees (Family Megachildae, Hymenoptera) known to occur in Iowa.,"
Proceedings of the Iowa Academy of Science, 55(1), 389-390.
Available at: https://scholarworks.uni.edu/pias/vol55/iss1/57