Solitary Bees and a Drone Fly

Location: Stanwood WA USA
April 12, 2013 11:12 am
Hello Bugman! I am an adiv gardener in Stanwood WA, USA about 50 miles north of Seattle. I love flowers but I have really become passionate about photographing critters that grace my garden, especially Bees. I was hoping if I include some photos, you could tell me what they are. Photo 1 has extremely long antennae and I have not seen this critrer since i took the picture, two years ago.
Photo #2 is a an almost triangle shaped bee that I call the Guard bee. This bee seems territorial and chases other bees away. Agressive even.
Phto# 3 is a larger bee that I named mickey mouse due to their large eyes and funny shaped wings. I have so many more! Let me know if you would like to see them! ~ Tracy
Signature: Tracy Sellers

Longhorned Bee
Longhorned Bee

Dear Tracy,
Your first photo of the bee with the long antennae is a Longhorned Bee in the tribe Eucerini which you can view on BugGuide.  We have several photos in our archive of male Longhorned Bees roosting communally in a formation commonly called a Bachelor Party.  Your third photo might be a Leaf Cutter Bee. 


We will continue to research that.  Your second photo, the one you called a Guard Bee, however is not a bee.  It is a Drone Fly, a nonstinging fly in the family Syrphidae.

Drone Fly
Drone Fly

Daniel, Thank you for the identifications. The Drone Fly was a surprise , but now that I think about it, it’s behavior does more closely resemble a fly.  I am excited to be able to put a name to  the Critters that grace my garden!
~* BEE Happy

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