Four new species of Sphecodes bees to add to the record on the lode-hornigsea field system.
- Sphecodes rubicundus
- Sphecodes ephippius
- Sphecodes geoffrellus
- Sphecodes longulus (which is tiny only a few mm long)
- Already recorded is Sphecodes monilicornis
New species for me
Mainly confined to southern England, with a few records from further north. Not known from Scotland, Ireland or the Channel Islands. A local mining bee but sometimes abundant where found. A western Palaearctic species, the range extending from Britain to the Urals, and central Iberia to Iran.
Status (in Britain only)
This species is not regarded as being scarce or threatened.
Particularly associated with calcareous grassland; occasionally open woodland on chalk, wooded heathland and fenland.
Females from mid April to late September; males early July to September.
Nesting habits are apparently largely unknown. In Germany, the species is stated to be “solitary” (i.e. non-social) (Westrich 1989).
Lesser celandine (Ranunculus ficaria), broom (Cytisus scoparius), plum (Prunus domestica), wild parsnip (Pastinaca sativa), wild carrot (Daucus carota), willow (Salix species), speedwell (Veronica species), guelder-rose (Viburnum opulus), tormentil (Potentilla erecta) and ragwort (Senecio species).
Another new species
This is a scarce species that is associated with Andrena humilis in habitats such as heathland, acid grassland and grassy cliff-tops. It has been recorded as far north as Yorkshire.
A few finds from today ID’s on each
New species to me.
Description and notes
A distinctive, medium-sized Andrena, the female having a coat of golden hairs on the last two tergites. It shares this feature with the slightly smaller A. fulvago (Christ), but has dark hind tibiae, rather than pale ones. The male is one of the small group which have bright yellow markings on the clypeus. This species may be quite plentiful where it occurs, usually, but not exclusively, on sandy soils, but is decidedly local.
Status (in Britain only)
Listed as Notable B in Falk (1991) (now known as Near Threatened Nb).
Most often associated with sandy soils, although also known from coastal head deposits where the soils are friable.
Univoltine; May to July.
May nest colonially or singly in areas of bare, firm, usually sandy, soil exposed to the sun.
It seems to restrict all flower visits to yellow-flowered Asteraceae.
The cleptoparasitic bee Nomada integra Brullé is specifically associated with this species. It has been found stylopised elsewhere in Europe.
After all the rain I managed to get out today just down to Chatterley valley didnt find much until I found this south facing bank with with a couple of scrapes. Andrena cineraria , Andrena nitida , lasioglossums (couple of specimens taken) , Halictus rubicundus Sphecodes (specimen taken) and Nomada flavoguttata