Small bees encountered in the flowers of tormentils (Potentilla spp.) on heaths and moorland should be examined closely as they may include this interesting species (the only British Andrena female to have a tridentate mandible, rather than a uni- or bidentate one). The male is one of a small number of British species to have a largely yellow clypeus.
Widely distributed throughout Britain as far north as West Sutherland (Inchnadamph (Loch Assynt)), East Sutherland (Golspie) and the Outer Hebrides (South Uist). In Ireland it has been recorded sporadically from Kerry, Wicklow, Galway, Mayo and Donegal (Stelfox 1927). It has been found on the Isle of Man but not in the Channel Islands. Generally a scarce species, only rarely locally common. A northern European bee, becoming scarcer further south. Stöckhert (1933) describes it as being a boreal-alpine species. The range extends from central Fennoscandia south to Spain, and eastwards to the former Czechoslovakia and USSR.