Name that bee

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House Bee
Sep 5, 2009
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OK, just saw this bee. What is it?
It was quite big. Nearly twice the size of a honeybee worker.

I thought it was some sort of solitary bumblebee of something.

Quite a story about the larva!

I did not know that larva of big hoverfly lives in the muddy water.
Thanks for that. I'll go looking for something more exotic next to give you more of a challenge :)

Reference said they were 10 - 12 mm in size. I thought the one I saw was more like 20 mm, but maybe my memory is bad; next time, I'll stick something of known size in the image . . .

I found one in a field last year in the grass and looking closer I thought it was AMM at first as it was so dark on the body,I was thinking OOH! has a beekeeper got AMM near me but then noticed the shape was all wrong at the back.
Like Firegazer the one I found was a good 20mm in size.
There are masses of them on the ivy flowers in the autumn where I sometimes go for a lunchtime walk escaping from my work. I suspect that the quarries nearby are where the maggots live. The adults seem to come in two colour forms, mimicking what you find in native honeybees - an all-brown type and the one with orange spots too.

I've known quite expert beekeepers be fooled by their similarity to honeybees. Once you go back for another look you'll see the difference though.


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