Megachile ligniseca


One of a suite of eight superficially similar species. All are medium to large sized solitary bees.

Identification difficulty
Recording advice

Most solitary bees and wasps are difficult to identify, and can rarely be identified from photos taken in the field.  All red-rated records should include a photo or set of photos of the specimen, illustrating the key characters taken from a standard key, which should also be referenced (e.g. ‘Falk, 2015’).  The full set of key characters are generally not visible in field photos and photos are rarely sharp enough. To aid in the verification of your records, please include face shot, side, top and wings.  The notes should state whether male or female, and explain how the specimen met the key characters.  Although NS may not be able to identify the species even if these reference photos are provided, the photos will be stored with the record and may allow it be identified in future.   Alternatively, NS will accept records identified by a recognised local or national expert, or that have been identified via BWARS’ Facebook .  If you have obtained this advice, please note the name of the person/organisation identifying the record in the ‘determiner’ field (e.g. ‘Stuart Roberts, BWARS Facebook’) rather than just a comment of ‘BWARS Facebook’.


Since it is a species that utilises bramble, thistles and Himalayan balsam it is likely to be found at ruderal dominated sites. It has also been found on post-industrial sites where it was recorded feeding on Himalayan balsam and found frequently flying about standing deadwood and bramble thickets.

When to see it

This is a summer-flying species with early records from mid-June to as late as early September. The majority of records however fall between early July and mid August.

Life History

Nests in holes in various forms of timber either in standing deadwood or fence posts.

UK Status

An uncommon species more frequently found in the south-east of mainland Britain. It has a more scattered distribution further north, seemingly reaching its extremity in north Yorkshire and two recent records from Staffordshire. There is also a cluster of records from south Wales though apparently absent from north Wales.

VC55 Status

Infrequent in Leicestershire and Rutland.

Leicestershire & Rutland Map


Yellow squares = NBN records (all known data)
Coloured circles = NatureSpot records: 2020+ | 2015-2019 | pre-2015

UK Map

Species profile

Common names
Wood-Carving Leaf-Cutter Bee, Wood-carving Leafcutter Bee
Species group:
Bees, Wasps, Ants
Records on NatureSpot:
First record:
09/08/2015 (Frankum, Maggie)
Last record:
08/07/2023 (Gaten, Ted)

Total records by month

% of records within its species group

10km squares with records

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