Friday, May 19, 2017

Early Bumblebee

Starting on a new class of creatures is like learning to birdwatch all over again, and finding that birds like bullfinch, Swift, Goldfinch, can all be seen from your garden.

Today it was Early Bumblebee (Bombus Pratorum) on the patch.  Needless to say a "very common bumblebee" but the first time for me I've looked at one knowing what it was. Very yellowish bees, with yellow hairs on their face. The ones with the yellow bands on the abdomen are males I believe. It seems a bit early for males, but I guess there's a clue in the name.

a female worker here - no thorax abdomen band, just a top yellow band on the thorax and a red band at the tail.

Finally a Common Carder Bee in classic pose hanging off the comfrey flower. The Early Bumblebees were on flat flowers and the Carder Bees were on the bell-shaped flowers of the comfrey. Wikipedia tells me Early Bumblebees have short tongues, which makes sense.

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