This pretty bee was photographed by my neighbour, Amanda, in her backyard. It’s the neon cuckoo bee, Thyreus notidulus.
It’s a native bee, about the same size as the European honey bee, and does sting (Amanda was stung on the foot). Many of our native bees don’t.
It parasitises the nests of another native bee, the blue-banded bee, Amegilla cingulata. A. cingulata burrows in the ground and lays each egg in a separate cell, packing them with pollen food provisions. T. notidulus slips in before the cell is sealed and lays its own egg. The cuckoo bee’s larva hatches before the blue-banded’s and eats the pollen, starving the blue-banded. Australian Geographic has an article about this behaviour.
It’s a jungle out there.