Osmia cornuta

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Osmia cornuta
Osmia cornuta copulation.jpg
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Hymenoptera
Family: Megachilidae
Genus: Osmia
Species: O. cornuta
Binomial name
Osmia cornuta
(Latreille, 1805)

Osmia cornuta is a species of bee in the genus Osmia. It is found in southern and central Europe, north to Belgium and the southern parts of the Netherlands. They are of the solitary type, this means that they do not live in colonies in hives like bumble bees and honey bees. They lack the pollen baskets on their hind tibiae because they do not produce honey but they do use the pollen and nectar to stock their nests when they are ready.

Osmia cornuta is also known as the builder bee, because when they build their nest in either the ground or structures that allow them to lay their eggs, it is usually the female who digs to find an adequate nest. They build them with debris that they have found in their habitat. The pollen and nectar that they store a for the larvae so they can feed themselves as they are left to fend for themselves. Once the larvae are in their adult form, they dig their way out of the nest and begin their adult life as solitary bees.[1]

The length varies from 10 to 15 cm. Adults are on wing from March to June. The best way to ensure to have bees in your garden, an insect hotel would hold adequate facilities to allow them to lay their eggs.[2]

  1. ^ Royal Entomological Society
  2. ^ Making a bug Hotel, RHS