A solitary Andrena Bees (Mining Bees) Insect, Colletes succinctus, and her cluster of cells, each with an egg attached to the cell wall. When they hatch, the larvae drop into the liquid mixture of honey and pollen below. Length 0.4 inches (10 mm).
Mining Bees Insect Facts:
- Common name: Mining bees
- Family: Andrenidae
- Suborder: Apocrita
- Order: Hymenoptera
- Class/subphylum: Insecta/Hexapoda
- Number of species: About 5,000 (about 1,200 US.)
- Size: From about 0.4 in i. (10 mm) to about 0.6 in (15 mm)
Key features: Mainly hairy bees, mostly dark brown or rusty brown, some black; mainly hairless in subfamily Panurginae; tongue short but pointed at the tip
Habits: Both sexes normally found on flowers they carry nectar and pollen back to the nest on the hind legs some species are cuckoos in the nests of others
Breeding: Females build nests by digging vertical tunnels in the ground, occasionally in dense aggregations with other females a few species are communal, with several females using parts of a single nest system; males often a different color from females
Diet: Adults feed on nectar from many different kinds of flowers, larvae supplied with nectar and pollen, often from only a single species of flower or several closely related species in a single family
Habitat: All terrestrial habitats and often among the commonest bees in gardens, especially in springtime; prefer open habitats; common in deserts, rare in dense forest
Distribution: Widespread on all continents except Australia and Antarctica.