A warm day last weekend brought bumblebee queens a-buzzing to our Forest Flame: both the Buff-tailed and my first definite White-tailed Bumblebees of the year. The bees were out in good numbers in the meadow in Glencairn Park too, where I found my first Small Garden and Large Red-tailed Bumblebees of the year.

Bombus lucorum, with Varroa mites, 10 March 2012

Bombus lucorum queen (White-tailed Bumblebee), with Varroa mites. I think these parasites have no effect on bumbles other than to weigh them down, although they are harmful to honeybees. (Pleas correct me if I'm wrong.) Sorry about the picture quality!

Bombus hortorum queen, Glencairn Park, 17 March 2012

Bombus hortorum queen (Small Garden Bumblebee) in Glencairn Park yesterday. She wasn't too happy about being put in a plastic ziplock bag for inspection!

Bombus lapidarius queen (Large Red-tailed Bumblebee) in Glencairn Park yesterday.

2012 BEES: 4