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Thursday, 13 August 2015

Four Bumblebee species in a Cuckfield garden today; Common carder bee, Bombus pascuorum, Bombus campestris, the Field cuckoo bee, Anthophora furcata, and Buff-tailed bumblebees.

Feeding on lavender in Cuckfield, West Sussex, England today was a Common carder bee, Bombus pascuorum.  Its nests are made above-ground in tall, but open grassland, under hedges and piles of plant litter; ref; bwars.
This is a good reason for "untidy" bee-friendly natural areas of our gardens.

An enemy of the Common carder bee is the Cuckoo bee below, which lays its eggs inside Carder bee nests which are then fed by the host workers.
 Feeding on "Lambs'ears" is purely for its own development and not for its own offspring.
This looks like Bombus campestris, the Field cuckoo bee.


 Above & below looks like an Anthophora furcata female, Its nest burrows and cells are excavated in rotten wood; another reason to leave rotting wood around in our gardens.
More info' at
 Click on any picture to expand them.
The fourth bee was Buff-tailed bumblebee, which I didn't bother to photograph as it is so common this year.
A "wild garden" is an endless source of fascination for nature lovers like me.
And a rich source of material for my nature talks. See

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