Pink rose petals for this leafcutter bee’s cell, video

July 5, 2017

in A selection of my garden wildlife videos, Gardening For Wildlife, Leafcutter bees, Solitary Bee Observation Box

Pink rose petals for this leafcutter bee’s cell!

I saw this pink blur out of the corner of my eye and investigated to find this beautiful pink rose petalled nest inside my solitary bee nest box, made by what is probably a patchwork leafcutter bee (Megachile centuncularis). Pink rose petals for this leafcutter bee’s cell not just ordinary pieces of leaf; she wanted colour!

Pink rose petals turning to brown in this leafcutter bee’s nest

According to BWARS and Steve Falk’s excellent book, leafcutter bees use leaves of ash, birch, honeysuckle, horse-chestnut, lilac and rose leaves. Obviously, this female did not read this information! Although Bohart mentions flower petals for the Alfalfa leafcutting bee (M. rotundata) in the USA and the Natural History Museum states that petals are sometimes used in their Leaf-cutter bees-Megachile spp. Insect Information Service doc. ( see below) I know it is no big deal using petals, but I feel rather chuffed to have one in my garden nest box!

I have myself seen scores of leafcutter bees cells made from leaves but not rose petals. I saw the Blue Mason bee, (Osmia caerulescens) use red rose petals for a nest it made in my own garden.


Read my popular article ‘Leafcutter bees, harmless, useful and often neglected pollinator’.

“All my articles and videos, available free, are funded by my  teaching and sales of award winning bumblebee nest boxessolitary bee boxes, and wormeries. Please help by spreading the word and forwarding this link to your friends and colleagues.  Thank you” George Pilkington

For more information about M. centuncularis see BWARS

All filmed using a Nurturing Nature Solitary bee observation nest box for our wild bees

For an MS word doc info sheet about the three most commonly seen in gardens leafcutters bees, from the Natural History Museum, download here (although the link states Garden Spider!)

For info and link to buy an excellent book Field Guide to the Bees of Great Britain and Ireland by Steven Falk

A handy resource supports this book by an extraordinary web site feature within Steve Falk’s Flickr web site which furnishes extra photos and other useful resources to assist with identification.

Interested in Citizen Science and pollinators? (e.g. bees!) The Buzz Club

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