This bee is one of eleven British species in the subgenus Micrandrena. These are very small species (body length 5–7 mm) that have an entirely black body integument relieved only by feeble transverse lateral bands of silvery hairs on tergites 2–4. Several species present difficult challenges to identification, as this often requires an appreciation of very subtle differences in surface microsculpture on the metasomal tergites and puncture density on the mesonotum. More pictures and notes here
Southern England and East Anglia. Also recorded from the Channel Islands. It is rarely common in any one site and females are far more often encountered than males. The summer brood is generally more often seen than the spring brood. The bee is almost certainly under-recorded (for example, recent visits to chalk grasslands often produced the species in numbers) and, on account of its small size, is easily overlooked.
In mainland Europe the species occurs from southern Sweden to southern Iberia, east to Turkey (Stöckhert, 1933; Gusenleitner & Schwarz, 2002). It has also been recorded from North Africa (Morocco) (Warncke, 1981).