Yesterday, 9th October 2013, [sunshine and very strong, cool winds] I spotted a long-tongued Bombus hortorum worker with pollen load, foraging the white dead nettle. So there must still be an active colony somewhere nearby - unusual for here. Are there any active B. hortorum with pollen loads in your area ?
Last week i saw Common carder females with pollen loads. Does that mean they have had a second brood this year?
Yesterday i saw many male carders and 2 Queens, one Buff-tailed and one tree bumble still foraging. Despite the awful weather, rain almost every day and strong winds, we still have a lot of bees. I’m glad of that.
Hi Creepy Crawley,
This cold and wet spell has lowered the numbers of bumbles seen about my garden these past few days, perhaps a bit of sunshine will bring them out again. I’ve not seen any more B. hortorum workers around the white deadnettles.
I’ve never been aware of a second generation of B. pascuorum here; and I usually see the last of them around bonfire night [first week in November]. I’ve had a look in “Bumblebees” by Ted Benton [Collins New Naturalists] Page 374, and it mentions that…active workers have been observed until at least early October; and that males and daughter queens [some with pollen loads in late September]...are consistent with double broods, although other explanations are possible. Perhaps someone else from BBCT can offer thoughts on your query?