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Leaf-cutter Bee Megachile centuncularis & wasps


Reference to a previous blog where someone mentioned that there seemed to a be a shortage of pollenating insects about, we have loads!
Every time I go to tidy up the garden, cut the grass or dig up weeds I seem to be disturbing one of the types of bumblebees who live in the ground. Now we have lots of patches which have been left as I know there is a nest underground, from watching to see where they go.
Yesterday I noticed that we have leaf-cutter bees about somewhere, they are solitary bees and nest in old wood (we have piles of that), leaf stems (tucked into the old hedge for just that purpose) or garden walls (could include the rubble heap?).
They look like honey bees apart from the orange tummy, so easily overlooked.
Apart from the bees we have hover-flies, various bugs and beetles, but haven’t seen many wasps this year.
Last year we had a nest (wasp’s) in the old end of the house, which we just left as they weren’t disturbing us. Building gone now, due to extension to be built. We also had one in the bank near the gate, but haven’t seen one this year.
Also haven’t seen any ladybirds, which I could do with as we DO have greenfly and blackfly!

Leaf cutter bee been at work!

Last year’s wasp nest in-situ in the roof space.

The nest removed, it measures approx. 2ft long x 18 inches wide.

Close-up of some of the interior

The exterior coating, amazing structure made entirely from wood pulp chewed up with saliva.

Still haven’t managed to get the bees under the floor in the shed to sit still long enough to take a photo – much too busy!

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intresting blog, thank you.

from jane!!!

6 Jul, 2013


That wasps nest is amazing! Thanks for such an interesting blog.

6 Jul, 2013


I have bees nesting under my shed too and have also seen evidence of leaf cutter bees on various plants around the garden.

The wasp nest is an amazing structure. I haven't seen any wasps this year yet, but in previous years I've seen them chewing at the woody bits of a conifer to make the pulp.

6 Jul, 2013


We have leaf cutters here too. They make the leaves look unsightly.
I haven't seen ladybirds for years. I saw one small one last year, but they seem to have become extinct here.
I'm pleased to hear you have plenty of insects in your garden :o)

6 Jul, 2013

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