One of the commonest neotropical stingless bees is Tetragonisca angustula (Latreille, 1811), popularly known in Portuguese as jataí, which occurs in variable nesting sites from Mexico to Argentina. We used 18 primers to generate 218 RAPD markers which we used to determined the genetic distance between T. angustula populations from 25 localities in three different Latin America countries, using Tetragonisca weyrauchi from the Brazilian state of Acre and the common honey bee (Apis mellifera) as outgroups. Genetic distance, calculated as the Percentage of Dissimilarity (14%), based on all markers divided the T. angustula population into eastern (group 1) and western (group 2) groups. However, we were able to separate the two groups by using only two primers that have generated five specific molecular markers. The eastern group consists of T. angustula angustula which occurs from Panama to the Brazilian states of Maranhão and northern Minas Gerais and has spread through the Brazilian Atlantic Forest as far as the southern Brazilian state of Santa Catarina. Group 2 is made up of T. angustula fiebrigi which has a more southerly and western distribution, occurring only in the western Brazilian states of Mato Grosso and Mato Grosso do Sul as well as the west of some other Brazilian states (Goiás, Minas Gerais, São Paulo, Paraná and Santa Catarina) and northeastern Argentina
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