Bumblebees on the increase?

Killgerm technical department have reported receiving an unprecedented number of enquiries regarding bumblebees. It seems that pest controllers have been inundated with calls for bumblebees in recent weeks! So what is going on? Why the perceived increase in bumblebees? Pest Control News decided to investigate. It turns out that it could all be down to the ‘Tree Bee’, Bombus hypnorum, according to Professor Dave Goulson of the University of Sussex. Rather than there being a general  increase in bumblebees, he suspects that it is the spread of B. hypnorum that is getting everyone talking. Prof Goulson reports that B. hypnorum is ‘a new species here that loves to nest in gardens, particularly in tit boxes.’ Intriguingly, pest controllers have reported ‘swarming’ behaviour with bumblebees. Prof. Goulson is able to clear this up and says that it is again B. hypnorum and ‘unlike other species the males hang around outside nests from which virgin queens are emerging, often forming large swarms which are very obvious and alarming to those who are unaware that the males don’t sting.’

(Video was supplied by Matthew Davies, Technical Editor of Pest Control News)

For information on the spread of B. hypnorum, visit the Bees, Wasps and Ants Recording Society website

Advice on what to do if you find a bumblebee nest is given on the bumblebee conservation trust website.

The trust also gives advice on moving bumblebee nests.

Pest Control News featured an article on B. hypnorum in issue 92, found here