British bees: the Ashy Mining-bee

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There are lots of different bees feeding on the Winter Heath in the garden at the moment. The most numerous is the Ashy Mining-bee which is a very distinctive black bee with ashy grey hairs.

Insight into Ashy Mining-bee (Andrena cineraria): a solitary bee that is widespread throughout England and Wales with only a few records in Scotland. It nests in the ground and is common in gardens. The males have a tuft of white hairs on the lower face, shown above right.

It flies between the end of March and early June to coincide with the flowering period of fruit trees such as pear and apple.

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