Mining bees (Andrenid bees) actually resemble the typical honeybee in their shape and size. Their bodies are colored dark with fine light brown or yellow hairs. Mining bees have chewing-lapping mouth-parts that they use to collect nectar and pollen from flowers. The protruding ‘lapping’ mouth-part is shorter in mining bees than honeybees giving them the name “short-tongued” bees. Females forage flowers in spring to buildup food reserve to raise the young. They consume nectar and pollen like most other bees.
Unlike honeybees, mining bees are solitary and do not form large, organized nests. As their name suggests, mining bees dig single nests in the soil. One spot that mining bees usually dig their nests are in sand boxes. This can be a frightening thing for your children because they both tend to construct next to each other. In spring, adult mining bees emerge, mate and begin nest preparation. Mining bees select well-drained soils to nest in such as banks, hills and sandy exposures.
THINGS YOU NEED TO KNOW:
Mining bees can sting, however they are not easily provoked. Mining bees are a docile bee. However, any insect that believes that it is being threatened will look to defend themselves and mining bees are no different. They are often difficult to kill and it should be done with a dust treatment by a licensed professional.