Ivy bee (Colletes hederae)

This bee was first recorded in the UK in 2001, it has now been found in much of southern England and Wales.  As suggested by its common name, ivy is the main plant used by this bee for pollen.  It is seen when ivy is in flower from early September to early November.  Ivy bees nest in loose, light or sandy soil on southern facing banks and cliffs with ivy nearby for foraging.  When conditions are suitable there may be thousands of nests in the same area.  This bee has probably been on the Common for only two or three years, but can now be seen in large numbers in some areas.