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Tree Bumblebee (B. hypnorum) 2014 Notes


Total Posts: 271

Joined 2012-05-24


Hi All,

On Springwatch Unsprung this evening on BBC2, they showed a short video of a Blue Tit interacting with a probable Tree Bumblebee Queen in a nest box. 
It was about half way through the programme.  It looked as though the bee won !

Do watch it on BBC IPlayer !



Total Posts: 50

Joined 2013-06-13



The video on spring watch was very interesting - can understand why the birds may decide not to use the box !

Unfortunately the colony of B. hypnorum I previously mentioned in a bird box in my garden has died out. I took a look into the box but no obvious reasons.  The colony started off relatively well, then I had other queens entering the nest, and recently I noticed that there were fewer and fewer workers being seen. Maybe the queen died.
I do have some hypnorum workers in the garden feeding on a variety of plants. I had also previously observed a queen entering the roof space of my bungalow but this queen has not been seen for sometime now, presumed dead/deserted. I was looking forward to seeing a male ‘swarm’ but maybe next year.

I currently have three active nests in my garden, a hortorum, a terrestris and a pratorum.

have you any active nests ?



Total Posts: 1

Joined 2014-06-07


Hi everyone, I have just found and joined this forum today. A few days ago I noticed bees coming and going under our soffits. I’ve done lots of ‘reading up’ and now feel quite excited they are here. We identified them as tree bumblebees.  We have two daughters 2&7, they have become very interested too. Initially I was worried whether the bees would do any damage where they have nested but now feel quite happy they wont.  There are always 4/5 bees hovering around the nest and this afternoon one bee (not sure if it was the queen or not but was very large) landed down on the ground then proceeded to walk up the wall to the nest, amazing to watch.



Total Posts: 11

Joined 2014-06-09


I’ve also just joined today.  I have a nest behind an air brick outside the kitchen wall; they’ve been here quite a while now and must have started producing sexuals about three or more weeks ago, as there started to be drone clouds and on more than one occasion I observed queens fly out and get taken to the ground by an attentive male.  So I think the colony is nearly over, as the size of the drone cloud has been diminishing in the last few days.  I’m consciouus that the very mild winter probably meant they started it sooner than in a normal year.  I live in Malvern, Worcs.


Total Posts: 33

Joined 2013-01-30


I was quite surprised to find this hypnorum queen since I’ve not seen any now since 4th August.


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