Tuesday 28 February 2012

Is this a Queen Bee?

Over winter we store empty plant pots and outdoor toys in the greenhouse and when we came to clear them out this year we found this bee in one of the toy boxes.

Garden Dad thinks it might be a Queen Bee and I'm feeling a bit sorry that I have displaced it from its hibernation. I hope I haven't exposed it too early to cold nights but I am also a little concerned that it will try to return to the greenhouse toy store and end up stinging one of the children. From my brief exploration online I believe that at this time of year a mated Queen bee will be busy looking for a suitable hive and beginning to gather nectar, so perhaps the warmth of the greenhouse will no longer be needed and a new home will soon be found. I have my fingers crossed.


  1. It's a red tailed bumblebee, it may well be a queen but may not be - we have lots of them around our garden and area.
    Beautiful aren't they.

    1. Thanks Dawn. It is beautiful. I've never seen one like it before. This one is very sleepy. Definately alive but still trying very hard to remain in its state of hibernation. It disappeared briefly today but has pretty much remained where I put it at the weekend. A friend told me this evening that this variety likes to nest under stones so I will try to find an appropriate new home for it.

    2. Yes I think they are quite solitary so will enjoy that.
      Something we've tried to make sure we have is some water around and available as one of the things bees suffer from when waking from the Winter is dehydration - might be worth popping a tub or tray of water nearby too.