Description and notes
A small, black solitary wasp. Identification keys are given in Yeo & Corbet (1995), Lomholdt (1984) and Richards (1980).
Recorded from England south of a line from the Severn Estuary to the Wash, with the majority of records coming from the south-east of England. Overseas this species is found throughout Europe and north Africa, with the distribution extending eastwards to the Urals and into Kazakhstan.
Status (in Britain only)
This species is not regarded as being scarce or threatened, though its status may require revision in light of the mapped distribution.
Found in a wide variety of open, sunny habitats associated with its feeding and nesting sites and prey habitats.
Univoltine; on the wing from June to early September.
Nest cells are stocked with a mixture of small flies, usually Chloropidae, though Trypetidae and Simuliidae are also captured.
Nests are in level ground in open, sunny situations. Richards (1980) notes that the species nests "in soil, usually in sand", suggesting that the species has a requirement for more friable ground. However, Abrahamsen (1950) indicates nests are constructed in "compact, clayey soil in the edge of woods". This accords well with nests in the UK that have been found dug into the soil of heavily compacted, well trodden dirt paths in unshaded, open areas (M N Smith, pers. obs.). Lomholdt (1984) states that the nests are very similar in contruction to those of L. albilabris, with the nest burrow descending vertically for approximately 10 cm before turning horizontally. Individual cells are dug off the vertical portion of the burrow.