Sunday, 16 July 2017

Bee of the week - Fork-tailed flower bee

This is the fork-tailed flower bee (Anthophora furcata).  It is a fairly widespread bee but isn't common and is inconspicuous so it probably gets overlooked.  It looks a bit like a small brown bumblebee.  The male has a yellow face.

The female fork-tailed flower bee makes her nest in a hole in rotten wood.  She has reddish hairs at the base of her proboscis and on her tail.

This female has pollen in the scopa (pollen brush) on her hind legs.

This photo isn't very good but it does show her very long tongue.

This isn't an easy bee to photograph as it flies so quickly and buries its head in the flowers.  Like other flower bees it makes a loud buzz as it flies.  You can read a BWARS information leaflet on Anthophora furcata here.

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