Morphologically, the genus Eremaphanta is characterized by some unique features like the presence of extensive yellow markings in both sexes, the stigma as long as the first submarginal cell, the second submarginal cell twice as long as the first and the weak differentiation of male S7 (Popov 1940, Michener 1981). Some species are among the smallest bees (e.g. E. minuta female is 4 mm in length).
Characters supporting the specific status for the nine Eremaphanta species are found in: the ratio between palpi and glossa lengths, the development of apical bands on terga and the appearance (sculpture, coloration) of the propodeal triangle. Colour patterns of the integument are also specific. On the contrary, the morphology of genitalia and hidden male sterna (S6-8) are strictly uniform among species, whereas these structures are diagnostic in most groups of Apoidea, notably in other Melittidae s.l. (Michener 2000). The yellow markings constitute a major characteristic of Eremaphanta. In most species, the integument coloration provides evidence for the association of the sexes. In the five species for which both sexes are described: E. convolvuli, E. dispar, E. fasciata, E. popovi and E. vitellinus, the coloration patterns are quite similar in males and females. However, these yellow markings are notably wider in Eremaphanta females than in males, unlike the other Melittidae s.l. (Macropis, Meganomiinae and Promelitta).
From a biogeographical point of view, most Eremaphanta are endemic and sympatric in Turkestan (Kazakhstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan) (Popov 1955, Michez & Patiny 2006). Two species were recorded outside these limits: E. iranica in the south of Iran and north of Oman, and E. dispar in Pakistani Baluchistan.
Michez D. 2011. The genus Eremaphanta Popov 1940. Atlas Hymenoptera, Mons, Gembloux. http://www.zoologie.umh.ac.be//hymenoptera/page.aspx??ID=20