Nomada ruficornis (Linnaeus,1758)

Description and notes

One of the larger brown and yellow-striped Nomada species. Its presence should be checked wherever its host, Andrena haemorrhoa (Fabricius), is present. It is very similar in appearance to the very common Nomada flava Panzer, but rather darker generally, though not as dark as Nomada panzeri Lepeletier. The presence of a clear notch in the tip of the mandible will confirm this (the only other British Nomada with a bifid mandible is fabriciana (Linnaeus), which is smaller and red). Take care when handling live females, however; female Nomada have quite a robust sting!


Occurs throughout Britain and Ireland.

It is widely distributed in northern and central Europe.

Status (in Britain only)

This species is not regarded as scarce or threatened.


As widespread as its host and in a similarly wide range of habitats.

Flight period

April to June.

Pollen collected

As a cleptoparasitic species, it does not collect its own pollen.

Nesting biology

A specialist cleptoparasite of the bee Andrena haemorrhoa (Fabricius).

Flowers visited

Visits a wide variety of flowers.


No parasites are known on this species.

Author of profile

M Edwards.

Year profile last updated