This species has also been known as S. ruficrus (Erichson) and S. rufiventris (Panzer), but both were misidentifications.
Both sexes can be identified by their yellow-marked faces and shrill hum. The male has pale green eyes in life, though this is a purely ephemeral character, the eyes becoming brownish-black after death.
An unusual Anthophora species, which excavates its nest burrows in rotten wood, rather than in the soil. Unusually for Anthophora the mandible is tridentate, with both an inner and outer subapical tooth.
Keys and general biology are found in Sladen (1912), Free & Butler (1959), Alford (1975) and Prŷs-Jones & Corbet (1991). A rather small yellow, black and white-banded bumblebee which can be rather difficult to distinguish from the very common Bombus lucorum. Although much is made in the literature of a centrally broken yellow band on the second segment of the abdomen, this is probably the worst field character to distinguish this species, being hard to discern with the naked eye. Even then one must be sure that the break is due to… Read more
A large and distinctive species with bright foxy-red hairs on the thorax and a polished black abdomen.
One of a group of five generally distinctive summer-flying species, females of which all have the hind tibiae widest at the apex (i.e. triangular in outline), not before the apex, as in the vast majority of Andrena. The abdomens of these species have distinct, wide bands of long hairs on each dorsal segment, giving them a rather furry appearance overall. Separating the species within the group is rather more difficult, especially for males.