Skip navigation

The NaturePlus Forums will be offline from mid August 2018. The content has been saved and it will always be possible to see and refer to archived posts, but not to post new items. This decision has been made in light of technical problems with the forum, which cannot be fixed or upgraded.

We'd like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who has contributed to the very great success of the forums and to the community spirit there. We plan to create new community features and services in the future so please watch this space for developments in this area. In the meantime if you have any questions then please email:

Fossil enquiries:
Life Sciences & Mineralogy enquiries:
Commercial enquiries:

4303 Views 2 Replies Last post: Apr 6, 2011 12:40 PM by starpixie RSS
Currently Being Moderated

Apr 24, 2013 2:00 PM

Is this a bee?

I don't think I've seen one of these before, not sure what it is!


------------------------------ Message was edited by: Jonathan - NaturePlus host to clean up the code and add the image inline to the post.

  • Currently Being Moderated
    Apr 6, 2011 12:30 PM (in response to starpixie)
    Re: Is this a bee?
    Not a bee but a super fly. It is the common Bee-fly, Bombylius major - 'common' because there are other less common species in the UK. This is a classic springtime fly which is often seen hovering and darting about on warm spring days (where have they gone this weekend?). The long proboscis is used for feeding from springtime flowers whose nectar is produced at the base of long tubed flowers such as primroses. They have a very interesting life history - females scatter their eggs close to the nesting tunnels of solitary bees, the emerging bee-fly larvae then crawl into these tunnels to feed on the store of pollen and nectar put their for the bees own larvae. Adult flies emerge in the spring and the whole process starts again.


    They have always been there to see  in the countryside but do appear to have become more common in gardens  over the last 10-15 years, somewhat as  a success of their hosts I suspect.

    • Report Abuse

More Like This

  • Retrieving data ...

Bookmarked by (0)