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Author Topic: advice on bumble bees  (Read 4858 times)

shygirl

  • Joined May 2013
advice on bumble bees
« on: July 10, 2014, 10:44:12 pm »
theres an active bumble bee nest at my work (inside an airvent) and people are getting very anxious to move them on, as rightly/wrongly believe they are a hazard.
does anyone have any knowledge of whether they are infact a risk? are they likely to be there in the same place again next year?
all i know about bumble bees is they die off in the winter and are endangered.

im pretty sure they are bumble bees and not masonary bees.

VEG

  • Joined Jan 2014
  • Maesteg South Wales
Re: advice on bumble bees
« Reply #1 on: July 10, 2014, 10:48:30 pm »
If they are bumble bees then they will not be any problem even if they are close to humans.

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: advice on bumble bees
« Reply #2 on: July 11, 2014, 09:19:25 am »

Bumble bees don't sting unless you actually sit on them, or in some other way threaten their lives.  They are peaceable creatures, essential to pollination and totally engrossed in their job of collecting pollen and nectar.  They live in small colonies, nothing like the huge numbers of honey bees which live in hives.  They apparently don't return to the same nest site the following year.  Just the new queen overwinters

I don't think you can 'move them on' without killing them and their nest.  Given the drop in bumble bee numbers, and the extinction of some species, you would hope that your co-workers would be proud of having a nest so close and under their protection.  I know their loud buzz can sound a bit threatening, but I think they are just trying to get you out of their way if you are in their flight path or in the way of the flowers they are heading for.

It's worth you fighting their corner shygirl  :bee: :bee: :bee:
"Let's not talk about what we can do, but do what we can"

There is NO planet B - what are YOU doing to save our home?

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

 Love your soil - it's the lifeblood of your land.

bloomer

  • Global Moderator
  • Joined Aug 2010
  • leslie, fife
  • i have chickens, sheep and opinions!!!
Re: advice on bumble bees
« Reply #3 on: July 11, 2014, 10:42:05 am »
I have found a nest in the wall of my new workshop (at new house) they come in through a broken window, I won't repair the window till there is no more sign of them flying, they are fun to watch.

Unfortunately Dobbie Dog keeps trying to eat them!

Steph Hen

  • Joined Jul 2013
  • Angus Scotland.
Re: advice on bumble bees
« Reply #4 on: July 11, 2014, 03:06:08 pm »
They'll most likely be fine. Most likely only have another few weeks left.
Sounds like might be hard work to move them from an air vent.
I've had records from people who've had nests in porches, sheds, house walls, even a kitchen, with no problems.
If people get unhappy a compromise may be to re route the bees using a bit of board, drain pipe of similar. I've advised people to do this to get traffic away from eg. front doors. And it's worked. The bees are redirected to exit and enter a few feet away rather than right where the people are. If you do this, it needs to be done in dark and preferably on a Friday night so bees have a couple of days to learn their new nest entrance and settle down.

shygirl

  • Joined May 2013
Re: advice on bumble bees
« Reply #5 on: July 11, 2014, 11:47:20 pm »
thanks,
so will they not nest there next year, do you think?
will the new queen not be inside there and start a new nest in the same place?
what month will they die off?

fingers crossed i can persuade them to leave the blighters alone but theres a high chance someone will get the fly spray out again
iv never seen a bumble bee nest before so its a shame its not in our place!

 :fc:

Steph Hen

  • Joined Jul 2013
  • Angus Scotland.
Re: advice on bumble bees
« Reply #6 on: July 12, 2014, 09:26:37 am »
Unlikely to be there next year. All bees in the nest apart for new queens die. Only new queens hibernate (elsewhere) then start a new nest next spring. Highly unlikely that a queen will choose this spot again.

When they'll leave this summer depends on species, season and where they're at now.  Most nests aren't noticed till they're well under way. Most nests finish in August. If you watch the traffic for ten-15 mins, you may see new queen bumblebees. They are bigger than most, wider and have fur which has sharp colours and no bald patches. A nest that is producing queens has little time left.

shygirl

  • Joined May 2013
Re: advice on bumble bees
« Reply #7 on: July 12, 2014, 10:23:33 am »
thanks, thats a great help.  :thumbsup: :thumbsup:

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: advice on bumble bees
« Reply #8 on: July 12, 2014, 10:25:11 am »
Please please don't let anyone at the nest with the flyspray  :o  It's not just the nest this year which will die, but any nests new queens will make next year and on forever.   

I don't really see what your co-workers object to.  The bees just go in and out, going directly to flowers for their nectar and pollen, then come straight back in.  Only the odd one will go astray and get indoors but you just have to open a window and out they go - they don't want to be indoors, and they don't want anything to do with humans, and can you blame them?  I'm not sure if there's a law against destroying bumblebee nests, the same as for birds nests when they are in use.  I doubt it, but it could be worth hinting that there is...........   Some bumblebees are endangered and unless you get them identified then the possibility remains that this nest is one of those species.  Pile the guilt on them, and try to get them to appreciate a bit of wildlife  :bee: :bfly: :ladybug: :bfly: :bee:
"Let's not talk about what we can do, but do what we can"

There is NO planet B - what are YOU doing to save our home?

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

 Love your soil - it's the lifeblood of your land.

shygirl

  • Joined May 2013
Re: advice on bumble bees
« Reply #9 on: July 12, 2014, 10:44:11 am »
i dont see it as a hazard people in general seem to have a "kill it" mentality unfortunately.

thanks, at least i have some more knowledge now to defend them better.  :fc:
« Last Edit: July 12, 2014, 04:40:20 pm by shygirl »

Fleecewife

  • Joined May 2010
  • South Lanarkshire
    • ScotHebs
Re: advice on bumble bees
« Reply #10 on: July 12, 2014, 11:50:10 am »

What does he think about the bees?
"Let's not talk about what we can do, but do what we can"

There is NO planet B - what are YOU doing to save our home?

Do something today that your future self will thank you for - plant a tree

 Love your soil - it's the lifeblood of your land.

Marches Farmer

  • Joined Dec 2012
  • Herefordshire
Re: advice on bumble bees
« Reply #11 on: July 12, 2014, 11:58:35 am »
Don't forget the buzzing sound is quite likely to be the bees fanning their wings to keep the colony cool.  We have three hornets nests in the farmhouse roof this year - now that's what you call buzzing!

 

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