Bumble Bees

There are over 250 known species. Bumblebees are social insects that are characterised by black and yellow body hairs, often in bands. However, some species have orange or red on their bodies, or may be entirely black.

Bumblebees form colonies, which are usually much less extensive than those of honey bees. Often, mature bumblebee nests will hold fewer than 50 individuals. Bumblebee nests may be found within tunnels in the ground made by other animals, or in tussock grass as opposed to Carpenter Bees that burrow into wood.

Queen and worker bumblebees can sting. Unlike a honey bee’s stinger, a bumblebee’s stinger lacks barbs, so it can sting more than once. Bumblebee species are not normally aggressive, but will sting in defence of their nest, or if harmed.


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