I have just now seen a B hypnorum worker with full pollen baskets on my Cyclamen here in Oxfordshire. I am certain this was a hypnorum as she had the distinctive ginger thorax although the tail did not look particularly white.
I dashed indoors to get my camera but she had flown away. I will keep a look out for her and keep my camera near by.
Is this unusual as I thought hypnorum nests were all finished by now?
Yes, this is a remarkably late sighting, particularly since there seem to be so few bumblebees around at present.
But I have seen one a bit later than this. I have a photo of one taken on 28th October 2010 in the late afternoon.
Thankfully the time and date info is recorded in the photo meta-data.
She was working Eleagnus flowers at the time.
We know that some “second generation” colonies of this species can occur, probably started up by non-hibernating queens somewhere around June / Jul;y.
If my memory is correct if you dig around in the BB Discussion thread topic lists, you should find a topic something like” Second Generation B. hypnorum colonies” or Late sightings etc in the Forum records for last year, or earlier. And I think it got a few posts.
Life has been very busy here over the last few weeks, so I’ve been lying low on the Forum.
Hopefully I can now get my head (and views) above the parapet on the Forum again !
Hi Sparrow & Clive,
At a natural history evening a week or so ago, I asked if anyone had any late bumble sightings. One chap had been doing a survey at one of our local cemeteries and one of the bird boxes was humming and he thought that it might be bumbles but didn’t fancy checking out the species because he was up a ladder at the time. This was the 4th November 2013. I’m guessing that they were possibly second generation Bombus hypnorum. What else might they have been? What do you think?
I also spotted a B. terrestris queen flying across a car park on 13th November. The weather was cold after an overnight ground frost but it was sunshine and blue skies at ca 1pm..