Queen bumblebee awake on wet windy November day 2015 video

November 13, 2015

in A selection of my garden wildlife videos, Bumblebees and their ecology, Gardening For Wildlife

Queen bumblebees hibernate don’t they?

By rights she should be hibernating. This was a Queen Bombus terrestris however, in some areas of the country, probably due to climate change, these plucky bumblebees have been active particularly in southern  areas and around the midlands.  This one to me was bedraggled, slow, soaked and very sorry looking. The moss land she was found on is woefully devoid of any flowers for her to forage on, at this time of the year. As she was very torpid, I suspect despite the wind and rain that day, the unseasonably warm weather on this warm sunny day, had awoken her from her hibernation site, somewhere near the drier areas of the woodland footpath.

soaked, slow and very sorry looking queen bumblebee!

soaked, slow and very sorry looking queen bumblebee!

If you find one like I did, you may be able to help if you live nearby. This information from the Bumblebee Conservation Trust is useful.

For more information about Bombus terrestris from BWARS click here

Download an Hymettus Information sheet about winter active Bumblebees here

NERC Planet Earth article  Bees brave British winters 

{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Claire November 13, 2015 at 1:22 pm

Poor thing. Hope she recovered.


nurturingnature November 13, 2015 at 6:14 pm

I placed her in the sun and in a dry area, thinking she would warm up and fly to find some flowers…. difficult to take her home for a sugar feed! Cheers, George


Marian November 13, 2015 at 2:10 pm

Still seeing the odd bumbles on remaining flowers In The garden, they still look healthy enough but presume these will die…..

Always good to hear from you George


Kit Welchman November 15, 2015 at 4:49 pm

Thanks for this. On November 11, I saw a B Terrestris Queen (I’m pretty certain – but didn’t get very close) browsing on rows of cyclamens in Garden Centre – Bury St Edmunds. Through info in your blog, I was able to submit record to BWARS.
More evidence of the winter nest cycle?


nurturingnature November 15, 2015 at 8:02 pm

My pleasure Kit and well done for contacting Bwars. All adds to the pool of knowledge!! Cheers, G


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