Species of the Month: September 2018


Ivy Bee Colletes hederae


First discovered in the UK in 2001, Ivy Bee is a mining bee which is relatively new to science, having been described in 1993. The species is now found throughout southern Britain. Similar in size to a honey bee but with a more furry thorax, the abdomen of fresh individuals has an orange hue. The species feeds almost exclusively on the pollen of Ivy flowers (shown above), and forms colonies in suitable habitat such as soft sand / mud banks (shown below).

The species is quickly spreading throughout south Wales, but we only have 124 records in the SEWBReC database. You can view the Welsh distribution on Aderyn here.

More information about Ivy Bee is available from the Bees, Wasps & Ants Recording Society (BWARS).

If you spot Ivy Bees during September (or at any other time of year), please send us the record, ideally via our Species of the Month form on SEWBReCORD (nb. you will need to be signed into SEWBReCORD to use this link). Instructions on how to submit records are available here.