A medium-sized, black and red species. It may be identified using Day (1988) and is characterised in the female by having comb-spines on the fore tarsus, a coarse, granular surface to the propodeum and rather long postnotum, and in the male by the subgenital plate which has a short tuft of hairs near the apex. Females of the subgenus Ammosphex Wilcke, to which this species belongs, are amongst the taxonomically most difficult of the family in Europe. Spooner (1941) was the first to correctly associate the females with the males, and earlier published records need to be treated with caution, as recognised by Richards & Hamm (1939).
Widely distributed, occurring in England, Wales, Scotland and Ireland as well as the Channel Islands. Apparently restricted to coastal sites in more northern and western areas.
Overseas, the species occurs in northern and central Europe and in Asia east to Mongolia.