Beginners bees, wasps & ants: Andrena cineraria - ashy mining-bee

Andrena cineraria - ashy mining-bee

A very distinctively marked ground-nesting bee that often nests in large aggregations in lawns and short turf. Common and widespread across most of Britain and Ireland, and apparently increasing in both range and abundance. The bee flies from late March to mid-June


Key features: Female

  • The female is one of our most distinctive spring-flying mining bees
  • Abdomen dark bluish-black colour
  • Broad ashy-white hair bands across the front and rear of the thorax
  • Often nest in dense "bee cities"



  • Much less distinctive
  • Still has the blue-black colour
  • Thorax entirely clothed in white hair
  • Inexperienced recorders should restrict records to females


More information on Andrena cineraria

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Photo: Female Andrena cineraria - Steven Falk