A Welcome Garden Sight

I have lots of these small flying black bugs in my garden.  Let’s take a closer look…

It looks like a wasp to me, but its big pollen baskets make me think that maybe it is a bee.  My best guess is that it is a type of mining bee.  According to The National Audubon Society Field Guide to Insects and Spiders, Mining Bees have a head almost as big as their thorax and an abdomen longer than both the head and thorax combined.  It also says that their wings can be a smoky color and that it has a pollen brush on its legs.  Seems like a possible match to me.

Mining Bees nest underground in tunnels and most live alone.  Since they are important for pollinating plants, I’m glad I have them around.

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