zarfrost's picture

Mining bee - early June

Observed: 9th June 2013 By: zarfrostzarfrost’s reputation in Invertebrates
Bee
with stamp for size comparison
bee side
habitat (hole at bottom left of photo)
Description:

I found an adult violet oil beetle here in the spring. As it is associated with mining bees I later looked for holes where I'd found it, and found about 11 over the area of lawn which is a slight slope (south facing). I caught the bee in the photos by putting a glass over a hole, but struggled to get a good photo. Activity ended shortly afterwards. I'd like to learn which species the oil beetle was associated with if possible.

Identifications
Species interactions

Species with which Early Mining Bee interacts

Comments

Jonathan's picture

What is the nature of the

What is the nature of the association between these species, do you know?

Jonathan
University of Edinburgh and Biodiversity Observatory (OU)

zarfrost's picture

Oil beetles and mining bees

Only what I've read - the oil beetle larvae wait on a flower e.g. lesser celendine or dandelion and hitch a lift with a bee and then feed on the bee's eggs, pollen and nectar. They pupate and overwinter in the bee's burrow and emerge the next year as adults. I assume the one I found right next to the bee burrows had just emerged from overwintering.
http://www.buglife.org.uk/getinvolved/surveys/Oil+Beetle+Hunt/Oil+Beetle...

However there is still much unknown apparently, including which bee species are involved:
http://www.ptes.org/files/1442_oil_beetles_final_report.pdf

Jonathan's picture

Thanks!

Thanks!

Jonathan
University of Edinburgh and Biodiversity Observatory (OU)