• Family: Andrena
  • Approximate # species in region: 80
  • Common name: mining bees

Andrena is one of the biggest groups of bees in our region. Mining bees are most frequently encountered easily seen in spring when dozens of species emerge to take advantage of spring ephemerals and woody plants in flower. A few, rarer species are active in summer (with the exception of exotic and abundant A. wilkella), and several common species are active in fall and they primarily forage on asters and goldenrods. Many Andrena have prominent facial foveae, which are vertical depressions parallel to the compound eyes on the face, which separates them from Colletes (see below for comparison).

Species covered:

Scientific NameCommon NamePhenologyForage
Andrena dunningiDunning’s mining beeSpringGeneralist
Andrena carlini/regularisCarlin’s/regular mining beeSpringGeneralist
Andrena erigeniaeSpring beauty mining beeSpringSpring beauty Claytonia spp.
Andrena bradleyiBradleyi’s mining beeSpringEricaceae, esp. blueberry Vaccinium spp.
Andrena frigidaFrigid mining beeSpringWillow Salix
Andrena wilkellaWilke’s mining beeSummerLegumes Fabaceae
Andrena nubeculaCloudy-winged mining beeFallAsteraceae
Andrena hirticinctaHairy-banded mining beeFallAsteraceae
Andrena asterisAster mining beeFallAsteraceae