These flower bees are by far the most common Bee in the garden at the moment drawn to the flowering blackcurrant, Honey Bee numbers are increasing, the Buff tailed Bumblebee queens are around in good numbers at the moment, only two sightings of the Early Bumblebee, and one sighting of a Tree Bumblebee so far this spring.
My new field guide on Bees of Great Britain tells me that there are nearly four hundred and fifty species of Flower bee worldwide, but only five of these occur in Great Britain, nearly all in the southern part of the country.
The Hairy-footed Flower Bee is the flower Bee most prevalent in the garden, and the only flower bee that I have come across, but there should be a good chance of seeing the Green- Eyed Flower Bee, which seems to reside in the south of the country, especially around coastal areas, the Fork-Tailed Flower Bee,like the Hairy-Footed Flower Bee, appears to be spreading across the country but mostly southern areas, the Four Banded flower bee looking very similar to the Green-eyed Flower Bee resides in the south of the country and a late flyer around june to august, finally there is the Potter Flower Bee one of Britain's most declined Bee, so probably unlikely to come across one of those.
Back to the garden and the Hairy-foots, there are now good views of both the male and female of the species performing around the flowers of the flowering blackcurrant. very fast flyers, but photographic opportunities arise briefly as they feed.
|Female Hairy-Footed Flower bee|
|Male Hairy-Footed Flower Bee|
This last photograph clearly shows the white patch on the front of the male's head.
One of my favourite Bees this one , but I must admit the Green-eyed Flower Bee looks quite spectacular, and one that I will be keeping a special eye out for.