Anthophora plumipes

Anthophora plumipes

The hairy-footed flower bee is a species of bee belonging to the family Apidae.
Hairy-footed flower bee (male) Found this little beauty on my lavender. What a lovely name it has! Anthophora plumipes,Geotagged,United Kingdom,bees,insects,isle of wight

Appearance

The adults of ''Anthophora plumipes'' grow up to 13–15 millimetres long. There are numerous color forms over the species' geographic range, which have resulted in this species being described under many different names. This species shows an evident sexual dimorphism. The body is always densely hairy. Males have most often bright reddish brown or gray hair, while females are usually all black or dark brown. Furthermore, the females show reddish orange scopal hairs on the hind tibia. The middle legs of males are very elongated. Males are also distinguished from females by having long hairs on its mid tarsi and the integument of the lower face yellow or cream coloured, rather than black. The long tufts of black hairs on the tarsi are used as a visual signal during mating.
Solitary bee It was quite difficult to identify the species. After discussions with entomologists on Twitter and FB I decided to classify as Anthophora plumipes, although it is not 100% sure.  Anthophora plumipes,Bulgaria,Geotagged,anthophora plumipes,apinae,bee,digger bee,endopterygota,hymenoptera,insect,solitary bee

Distribution

These bees are widespread in most of Europe and Asia from the British Isles to China and Japan, the Near East and in North Africa. In the 20th century, the species was introduced to the United States.
Solitary bee Anthophora  Anthophora plumipes,Bulgaria,Geotagged,anthophora plumipes,apinae,bee,digger bee,endopterygota,hymenoptera,insect,solitary bee

Behavior

''Anthophora plumipes'' is a univoltine species. These bees can be encountered from March to June, feeding and collecting pollen and nectar on early flowering plants, mainly on , Boraginaceae species , Lamiaceae species and Fumariaceae .

These solitary bees do not build colonies. The females usually make nests in clay slopes and steep walls of mud, where they excavate cells, which they fill with pollen and nectar , laying a single egg on each pollen mass.

Habitat

The ''hairy-footed flower bees'' commonly inhabit gardens, open woodland, and coastal sites.

References:

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Taxonomy
KingdomAnimalia
DivisionArthropoda
ClassInsecta
OrderHymenoptera
FamilyApidae
GenusAnthophora
SpeciesA. plumipes