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Interesting bumblebee behaviour

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Joined 2013-07-25

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We have a bumblebee nest underground by the front of our garage at home. The bees enter a small gap between the concrete drive and the garage base. This is not the first time they have decided nest there and cause us no problems. We also have a second smaller nest in our compost heap. I think they are terrestris but will upload a photo later for identification.

They dont seem to mind us being around and are happy for us to open one garage door to go in and out etc. They do seem to object to us opening both doors though.

Within seconds of the second door opening there are many bees in the air (10 - 20 at a guess) circling round seemingly unable to find their home. They are not aggressive but it is a little frightening as they will fly round anyone who goes near. They fly through the garage and make no attempt to go back into the nest. If the second door is closed within minutes there is hardly a bee to be seen and they go back to their usual routine of foraging for food going in and out of the nest with no problem.

Could they using the second garage door as a major landmark to find the nest? They seem totally lost if it is opened. We have to get large things out of the garage after dusk when the bees have gone to bed.

Mike

     

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Rank

Total Posts: 2

Joined 2013-07-25

PM

More interesting behaviour

My wife tidied up the drive and lined up our trio of wheelie bins in front of the garage doors. Went out to dispose of some recycling bits & pieces and noticed loads of bees in the air flying around confused. Moved the bins 2 feet away from the doors and the bees very quickly went back to normal. I think we have some very easily confused bumbles here.

Mike