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Beewatch 2007 – Plight of the Bumblebee ~ by catherine

Beewatch 2007 - Plight of the Bumblebee

The Bumblebee Conservation Trust, based at Stirling University, needs your help in recording sightings of bumblebees. They would like you to record what species you see, where and how many, and take pictures of any unusual specimens. Go to http://www.bumblebeeconservationtrust.co.uk/surveys.htm to find out how to take part.

bumble bee


They are also running nesting box “trials” and need help with trying out different versions to find the most effective design. The bumblebee is a familiar sound of summer , and bumblebees are in decline - with several species of bumblebee now extinct or endangered. The bumblebee is an important pollinator, not least for commercial raspberry and runner bean crops, and without it many bee-pollinated plants will disappear.

See also Chris’s previous blog on bumblebees.
We’ve built one of the flower-pot style nests. I’ll let you know whether we get any occupants.


see also Kim's video : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uux1HGvGkUc from comment below

Posted in: Flora & Fauna, ~ On: 3 May, 2007

19 comments so far

4 May, 2007

More on bumblebees and a guide to identifying the different types at

10 May, 2007

I’ve found a high number of dead, or very weak Bumblebees this year, especially in March and April. Anything I can do to help, apart from the recordings, which I shall start now ?


16 May, 2007

An excellent radio program about bumblebees at
with lots of information / advice – about where they might over-winter in the garden (hibernaculi), or nest come spring / summer, planting for bumblebees. Note the caveat at the foot of the page – about using dilute sugar solution not honey.

Cherry McDonald
6 June, 2007

We have a bumble bees nest in a bale of straw, these are a small bumble bee and are very active on the cotoneaster and the laurel flowers, unfortunately they are too active to get a photo of, but I thought you would loke to know anyway.
We also have many of the big bumbles with black and yellow bands.

9 July, 2007

4 April, 2008

Did the flower-pot nest work? There’s another survey this year, website at the same place:

20 June, 2008

Hi Bob – no signs of life I’m afraid. The cat and the children probably didn’t help though!

3 July, 2008

We’ve seen loads of huge bumble bees in our wood this year – they are nesting in old vole holes and in holes at the base of tree stumps.

15 July, 2008

I have 3 bumble bees nesting separately 2 in wooden flowers boxes and one in my huge plastic flower pot which has holes in the side they don.t bother us at all very interesting to watch so I remove my onions I was growing so not to water them. North Vancouver BC Canada.

23 March, 2009

I have seen many bumble bees coming out of the ground at the top of a hill in wiltshire. The hill is covered in dense moss and grass. I think they are the solitary kind as I could not see any others in the moss.

16 May, 2009

I am a contractor and im fixing to start a roofing job…but my customer has a whole bunch of bumble bees nesting within the roof.They have burrowed holes in the fascia board…How do i get rid of them without harming them?

21 May, 2009

Hi William – they sound more like wasps to me. Bumble bees nest at ground level and and are mostly pretty solitary. Wasps make their nests from chewed wood, hence the holes in the fascia board I guess. Sounds like your clients will need to get in some pest control before you can start work.

Tracy Pepler
21 May, 2009

Hi William, John from Sussex pest solutions says:
I never kill bees as part of pest control. The best thing to do is contact
http://www.sussexbee.org.uk/swarms.htm – they might charge to remove the bees if
they can.



Kim Iverson
17 June, 2009

I just found a bumble bees nest in my garden while cleaning up the area and instead of killing them–strongly against that!–I simply moved the nest. Patience and careful planning was all it took, then I moved it just a few feet away to a safer place for them as well as my dogs. I’ve uploaded an amazing video that I made of them as they allowed me to get right on top of them and I found the way they built the nest to be incredibly amazing and fascinating. The nest is still completely intact and nothing was disturbed because I simply wanted make sure they were in a safer area since that place was being cleaned up and I have dogs that roam around there. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uux1HGvGkUc They are incredibly fascinating!

Doreen Stec
20 June, 2009

6/20/09 I have a bumblebee nest under my cement patio. The entrace is in the crack between the edge of the patio cement and the foundation of the building…right under my sliding glass door to my livingroom. Not only am I concerned about bees entering the house as I come and go, but my cat has already been stung (in the foot) and my dog managed to have a close encounter without getting stung. I am very distressed to think I may have to destroy them, but I cannot risk anyone getting stung again. Thankfully kitty did not have a reaction to the sting. My research tells me bumblebee nests have only one entrance/exit. I can easily plug the entrance, but that means the nest is doomed – correct? There is no way to trap them and take them somewhere else?(the queen would not be lured out, correct?) I am positive they are bumblebees (big, fuzzy black and yellow). Ripping up that part of the patio is out of the question (I rent). By the way, they have taken up residence in a hole used as recently as this past winter by the resident mole – so maybe there is a back door. (?) Do you have any suggestions? Would you like photos? Any input would be appreciated. I will hold off on plugging up the hole until I hear from you. I really do not want to kill them. Thank you.

28 October, 2009

I am interested in the reply you gave to Doreen Stec re Bumble Bees under cement patio, I have the same thing.

30 October, 2009

Mike, I never received a response from the blog. The bees were active all summer but faded away at the end of the season. I could not bring myself to hurt them. I decided not to disturb the nest and simply kept my eye on my pets when they were out on the patio. It is my understanding they will not return to the same nest spot next year. Good luck.

d jackson
15 July, 2010

near our house they are digging out a old pond and there are two bumble bee nests; and also pulling trees out, what will happen to to the bees.?

25 July, 2010

hi i have two nests of redtail bumblebees, one on the side of my waterfall and the other in my shed ,the nest in the shed while having healty bees also has dead and mite infested bees which i have filmed ,with one heavly infested bee i have tried to remove the mites ,when removed they look like small spiders ,is there anything i can use to kill the mites without hurting the bees i look forwarde to hearing from you thank you

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