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Photography with cameras
Nikon D3x, Nikon D300, Canon 50D
Image editing with Photoshop
Andrena flavipes
Andrena flavipes


Andrena flavipes
Andrena (Zonandrena) flavipes is a species in the order Hymenoptera, the suborder Aculeata, the superfamily Apoidea - unranked: bees (Apiformes), the family Andrenidae, the subfamily Andreninae, the genus Andrena and the subgenus Andrena (Zonandrena).
Scientific synonyms for this species are Andrena levilabris, Andrena punjaubensis and Andrena kengracensis. Andrena (Zonandrena) flavipes are widespread in southern and central Europe, where they mainly occur at lower altitudes. Andrena flavipes reproduce twice a year and are under the protection of BArtSchV in Germany, The Federal Ordinance on the Conservation of Species.
Andrena (Zonandrena) flavipes are one of the medium sized species. The females reach body lengths of 10 - 14 mm, while the males are 9 - 13 mm in length and slightly slimmer. The hair on the face makes the head appear brownish in colour. The sides of the thorax also also covered in brownish hair. The abdomen has a black base colour, and is particularly striking in the females because of the broad white bars at the end of their abdominal segments. Andrena flavipes are similar in appearance to honey bees (Apis).
Andrena flavipes live in diverse habitats, such as forest edges, parks, gardens, and sand, gravel or clay pits. They feed on a wide range of flowering plants from which they obtain nectar and pollen.
In late March, the adult bees of the first generation hatch. The males appear first and fly back and forth over the soil nests on hot days. Mating takes place in April. Immediately afterwards, the fertilized females begin constructing the brood nest in the ground. Nest colonies form/can form, comprising several hundred - up to one thousand - individual nests in a relatively small area. The nests consist of a 160 - 230 mm long main passageway, which can be connected to individual brood chambers. The brood chambers are filled with food for the larvae by the females, a single egg is deposited on the food and the brood chambers are closed. Shortly after hatching, the larvae of the 2nd generation start feeding on the food supply. They develop in their chamber. Approximately 3 weeks after mating the males die. The females care for their brood until the end of May and then they die too. The larvae are left to fend for themselves until June when they pupate. In early July, the adults of the 2nd generation hatch from their pupae. They are active until September when they die. Their offspring overwinter in soil nests, hatching in March of the following year as adults of the new 1st generation.
The cuckoo bee Nomada fucata lives parasitically in the nests of Andrena flavipes, smuggling its eggs in, and leaves its brood as well as their supply with nutrition to the hosts. It may happen that the cuckoo bee larvae eat all the host larvae’s food supplies so that the host larvae eventually starve.
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Photography with Cameras
Nikon D3x, Nikon D300, Canon 50D
Image editing with Photoshop
1. Andrena flavipes
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