UK Guides - national, regional and county guides to aculeates


Britain - Steven Falk's Review of the Scarce and Threatened Bees, Wasp and Ants of Great Britain, published in 1991, and long out of print, is now available as a pdf online.

East Sussex - A Survey of the Bees and Wasps of fifteen Chalk Grassland Sites within the East Sussex Downs. This is an extensive report on this area by Steven Falk (2011).

Essex - web pages from the Essex Field Club, containing maps, habitat data and information on the species in the county.

Leicestershire - The Aculeate Solitary Wasps and Bees (Hymenoptera: Aculeata) of Leicestershire. Archer M.E., 1990. Transactions of the Leicester Literary and Philosophical Society, pages 9-25.

Staffordshire - Checklist of Aculeate Hymenoptera in Staffordshire

Wales - A Provisional Checklist of the Invertebrates Recorded From Wales, 2. Aculeate Wasps, Bees & Ants (Hymenoptera Aculeata).

Warwickshire's Bumblebees Steve Falk (2011). A comprehensive guide to Warwickshire's bumblebees. Contains many helpful images that will aid workers trying to separate similar looking species in the field.

Worcestershire - A Review of Worcestershire Aculeate Hymenoptera by Geoff Trevis (updated 2007)

South West England - A report on 23 declining species in south west counties. Published by Buglife.


An excellent book by BWARS member Ted Benton is available through book dealers. The Bumblebees of Essex presents the first book on the bumblebees of any British county. Covers all of the bumblebees of Essex and southern England, plus a selection of insects which mimic bumblebees. Identification keys are provided, along with detailed distribution. ISBN-10: 0953036243

BWARS member Geoff Allen has written a comprehensive 448 page account of the Bees, wasps & Ants of Kent, containing 120 pages in full colour and many superb illustrations by the author.

The Bumblebees of Kent by Nikki Gammans and Geoff Allen, 2014, published by Kent Field Club.  The 170 page book includes more than 80 colour photos and provides updated maps and more extensive species profiles than Geoff’s 2009 book. 

A Provisional Atlas of the bees, wasps and ants of Shropshire (2014), by BWARS members Nigel Jones and Ian Cheeseborough, provides species accounts for 314 species recorded in Shropshire. The book also contains short chapters on the history of aculeate recording in Shropshire, aculeate life histories, finding aculeates, a Shropshire checklist and four colour plates. Available from FSC publications.

Somerset & UK
BWARS member Robin Williams has written and illustrated a comprehensive overview of British  Bumblebees with emphasis on the county of Somerset. The book includes ten appendices providing much useful information for the study of bumblebees. Details here

Available direct from the author
Price: £14 including post and packaging (UK) from: Robin Williams, Kyntons Mead, Heath House, Wedmore, Somerset, BS28 4UQ


BWARS member Nick Owens has co-authored a comprehensive overview of the Bumblebees of Norfolk

BWARS member David Baldock has written a comprehensive 312 page account of the Bees of Surrey, containing 48 colour plates and distribution maps for each species, together with an illustrated key to bee genera.

David has also written Wasps of Surrey, containing many photographs by another BWARS member, Jeremy Early and a comprehensive account of every wasp recorded in Surrey (90% of the British wasp fauna).

Highland Bumblebees - Distribution, Ecology and Conservation, Murdo MacDonald & Gill Nisbet, HBRG, Inverness. ISBN 0 9552211 0 2. Details from HRBG website.

United Kingdom

Bees of Great Britain and Ireland  (2015) by Steven Falk and Richard Lewington. An excellent, comprehensive and extensivley illustrated guide to all the British species of bees. The book is complemented by a substantial collection of images on Flickr to further aid identification of species.

Bumblebees An excellent account of Britain's bumblebees by BWARS member Ted Benton. The book also includes an extensively illustrated key to all the British species.

A Review of the Scarce & Threatened Bees, Wasps & Ants of Great Britain, S Falk, 1991,
Joint Nature Conservation Committee. Available from the Natural History Book Service. Also available as a free download

Plants for Bees is a comprehensive review of the many associations between native bees and plants in Britain.