Sunday 10 June 2012

A morning beewatching

A warm morning of sunny spells, bees come out en force. A Cuckoo bumblebee, possibly a male Bombus vestalis (above), a cleptoparasite of Bombus terrestris fed on the Erysimum Bowles Mauve. Bombus pratorum workers and males are feeding on many flowers, Centaurea montana, Chives and Herb Robert, surprisingly also Foxgloves and also nectar robbing the Comfrey.
A couple of queen bumblebees, Tree (above) and Buff Tailed bumblebees feed together on the patch of Red Valerian for a long time.
On the Oxeye Daisies, a Lasioglossum sp.
The first leaf-cutter bee, Megachile willughbiella, of the year feeding on Erysimum. I also saw it on the geraniums.
 Wall Rocked receives a visit of a very worn Andrena
The new Osmia caerulescens are now everywhere. The males have been checking the bee post. In the next shot, a male stretches its tongue, amazingly long. No surprise its preference for Sage and Lamium maculatum in the garden.
This female sunbathing next to the Sage shows why they are called Blue Mason Bees
The summer bees overlap on early June with the last of the spring bees. An Anthophora plumipes female was briefly feeding also in the amazingly popular Erysimum. Finally, Red Mason Bees, Osmia rufa were abundant. Overall 11 species, not counting honeybees. A wonderful morning bee watching!


Rob said...

A fantastic variety of bees - congratulations on making such a bee-friendly garden.

The one stretching its tongue is impressive - I've not seen one do that before!

I've made a bee post but alas there are no takers yet besides woodlice. Any tips? I tried tying on a welcoming bouquet of flowers a couple of weeks ago! said...

I really enjoyed this post! Wonderful species and outstanding pictures. I haven't been anywhere near as successful with my pollinator garden. This is it's 2nd Summer. Things are beginning to bloom, but no great Hymenoptera so far...

snippa said...

We love to watch the bees too but don't know their different names.
Great photos.

Africa Gomez said...

Thank you Rob, Al and snippa for you kind comments. Rob, I had the same problem with the bee post the first time we set it up, it ended up in the shadow once plants started growing, but as soon as we placed it in a south facing sunny spot the bees started using it. Best of luck to everybody attracting bees!