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Is this a bumblebee or indeed, a bee at all?

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Joined 2014-08-19

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This creature has been in my garden in Canterbury Kent for most of August so far.  I can’t identify it. It is quite large, more hornet sized.

     

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Total Posts: 119

Joined 2013-01-10

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Hi Rosie T,
Is this your first post?  Welcome to the forum.
Your insect is a hoverfly not a bumble, most likely a large female Volucella zonaria [ is tergite 2 & the scutellum chestnut coloured?];  or the other possibility is slightly smaller Volucella inanis, which is yellow & black & has no chocolate.  Check out “British Hoverflies” by Alan Stubbs and Steve Falk. Both hoverflies are impressive beasties.  I’ve only had V. inanis this year so far.
urbanbumble

     
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Joined 2014-08-19

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Thank you so much, yes the Hornet Mimic Hoverfly, and yes my first post smile  It may not be a bee, but it is doing a great job pollenating
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Hi Rosie T again,
Coincidence ! This afternoon,  I’ve just seen my first Volucella zonaria [plus chocolate] hoverfly of 2014,  foraging on the blackberry flowers [Rubus sp.]  in my garden in VC55.  Just completed my BeeWalk No.6. at a local country park,  but I only saw one Bombus pascuorum [worker I think] foraging white clover; and a dead Bombus terrestris male .
‘bye for now,
urbanbumble