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Wool Carder Bee

A bee found mainly in gardens where females collect the woolly fibres from some garden plants to line her nest which can be either in masonry or dead wood.


  • Wool Carder Bee: wishing and hoping

    Post date: Sunday, 31 May, 2015 - 00:00

    When I discovered this insect in our garden I thought at first it was a bee-mimicking hoverfly as it would rest a while on a leaf, then take off and hover around for a minute or two before returning to its resting place. Having failed to find a hoverfly fitting the description I widened my search and discovered that it is, in fact, a bee - the wool carder bee (Anthidium manicatum). It is related to leaf-cutter bees but this one does not cut up leaves it gathers (cards) fibrous hairs from the leaves of some garden plants to line its nest.

    This particular specimen is a male. He spent several days in our garden around a flower that has very white furry leaves and he used that as his base camp. He waited around that plant wishing and hoping a female might come by to gather woollen material for her nest; if one did I am pretty sure he was ready to strike! Whether he was lucky I do not know, one day he was gone never to be seen again.


Common Name Wool Carder Bee
Scientific Name Anthidium manicatum
Species Group Bees
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Similar Species

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Notebook Distribution Map Sites List Some Charts Some Photographs Recent Records Guidance Notes

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