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Bumble bee pschycology

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Total Posts: 2

Joined 2013-06-28

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Hello
My name is Kevin and I have joined this forum for any advice.

I know only 2 things about bumble bees 1) they are an endangered species and 2)
they are not normally aggressive.

My problem is they have recently built a nest in my lawn, underground. When I mow the lawn near their nest some come out and start hovering menacingly around the lawn mower. By this time I have legged it and only return when the bees have flown off.
I have no wish to upset the poor little blighters and would not dream of damaging their nest.

Has anyone any experience of this and are able to recommend how not to upset them when mowing.

     
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Total Posts: 14

Joined 2012-08-21

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Hi Kevin,

Welcome to the Forum! And thanks for wanting to know more about bees and help them.
I consider you to be very lucky on two counts: a) having a lawn to mow! and b) having a BB nest to observe in your garden!

May I suggest the obvious which is to leave a section of your lawn unmown around the entrance of the nest until the BB activity has died down. (The bee behaviour will tell you how big this needs to be and you already seem to be in tune with what aggravates them). This will happen naturally when the bees die off in the autumn. You can then mow that area again. This way you will stop aggravating them.

If you get a picture or two of them leaving/entering the nest we could see what species you are lucky to have in your garden.

Pull up a chair and enjoy the spectacle of these little creatures amazing feats!

vicbee

     
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Total Posts: 2

Joined 2013-06-28

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vicbee - 29 June 2013 07:05 PM

Hi Kevin,

Welcome to the Forum! And thanks for wanting to know more about bees and help them.
I consider you to be very lucky on two counts: a) having a lawn to mow! and b) having a BB nest to observe in your garden!

May I suggest the obvious which is to leave a section of your lawn unmown around the entrance of the nest until the BB activity has died down. (The bee behaviour will tell you how big this needs to be and you already seem to be in tune with what aggravates them). This will happen naturally when the bees die off in the autumn. You can then mow that area again. This way you will stop aggravating them.

If you get a picture or two of them leaving/entering the nest we could see what species you are lucky to have in your garden.

Pull up a chair and enjoy the spectacle of these little creatures amazing feats!

vicbee

Hi Vicbee
I hope the attached file will allow you to identify the type of bumblebee
Unfortunately the size limit of 300kb means I have had to crop one of the poorer pictures to get it to fit. my pictures are all about 6 meg. to reduce a good one to 300kb would have resulted into Eric the half a bee!

     

Image Attachments

IMG_3310.JPG

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Total Posts: 14

Joined 2012-08-21

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Hi Kevin,

Gorgeous photo! What you have is a Bombus terrestris/buff-tailed bumblebee (BB) or Bombus lucorum/white-tailed bumblebee female laden with pollen and showing the characteristic bent antennae of a female BB. The workers (sterile females) of these two species can be difficult to tell apart. Both have one yellow band at the top of the thorax and one yellow band on the abdomen. Both are ‘large and robust species’ (Edwards & Jenner). These two species typically nest underground along with B lapidarius/red-tailed BB.

Some software allows photos to be cropped (reducing the visible area of the photo) and also to ‘resize’ it by reducing the number of bytes the photo has. I use Microsoft Office Picture Manager, click on the ‘edit pictures’ tab, choose crop option and then resize the photo. But there are other software options available and I had to ask for help myself on this Forum to get me started as I had no idea. So there are others out there who can better explain how to load photos than I can!

vicbee