Andrena labiata possibly foraging on dandelion (Taraxacum spp.)

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Nigel Jones
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Andrena labiata possibly foraging on dandelion (Taraxacum spp.)

On 6 May, near Church Stretton in Shropshire, I photographed several species of bee apparently nectaring on Taraxacum - most of them had their heads buried deep inside the flower heads. The bees were mostly rather moribund, it having been a cool day with only brief spells of sunshine. One of the bees photographed was a female Andrena labiata and when I viewed the images on a large screen it showed that the bee had copious amounts of yellow pollen all over it, but particularly on its hind leg pollen basket. This raises the distinct possibilty that Andrena labiata, well known for foraging mainly from speedwells Veronica, will forage from Taraxacum. This would be an additional forage plant to those noted in the account on this website.