|Featured CA Bee:
As sunflowers are starting to bloom, keep an eye peeled for one of their most common visitors: Melissodes sp. This summer bee, commonly known as the Long-Horned Bee, is medium-sized and stout-bodied. Males have very long antennae, hence their common name. Brightly colored pollen loads on the legs identify the female bees. They can be seen foraging May-September but are most common in June and July.
Males often sleep together in aggregations on the floral heads of Asteraceae such as Cosmos bipinnatus. and Helianthus annuus. Careful examination in the early morning before temperatures warm up will often reveal several sleeping together!