Common carder bee

Last update: 27 December 2019
SPECIES: Common carder bee (Bombus pascuorum)
GENUS: Bumble bees (BOMBUS)
FAMILY: APINAE



OBSERVATION:
2020-VI-202020-VI-172020-VI-132020-VI-082020-V-312019-VIII-252019-VIII-162019-VIII-142019-VII-172019-VII-142019-VI-232019-VI-222019-VI-212019-VI-142019-VI-072015-IX-26

YEARS:
201520192020

MONTHS:
JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec


1. DISTRIBUTION

The most common bumble bee in the Netherlands [3] and in the garden. The species is found in all landscape types [3].

2. BEHAVIOUR

2.1. ACTIVITY

The bumble bee is active from half April until the beginning of October [1, 3].

2.2. DEVELOPMENT

The species is univoltine, i.e. produces one generation per year. They nest above and under ground in moss and grass, old mice nests and barns [1, 2].

A colony consists of about 60-200 individals [1, 2].

2.3. FOOD SOURCES

This species is not picky and will fly on almost every flower. This is due to their long tongue, on average 8,9 mm in lenth [1] , with which they can reach to the nectar in every flower type [3].

2. IDENTIFICATION

The species is recognizeable by the brown hairs on the thorax [1].
The colors are variable and categorized in two subspecies [3]:

  1. B. p. floralis
    • Found in the entire country
    • Variable amount of light colored hairs on underside, throax sides, face and legs [3]
    • The brown haris have lighter colored edges [2]
    • The abdomen has a brown or light brown tip [2]
    • Tergites I – III are light colored [2]
    • Sides black [2]

  2. B. p. moorselensis
    • Found in the West of the Netherlands
    • Almost no light colored hairs, thorax and last three tergites warm brown colored
    • Tergites I – III are black [2]
    • Sides black [2]

Below is an overview of colors I’ve found in the garden so far.

B. p. floralis

Orange brown with white

Common carder bee (Bombus pascuorum) on Purple toadflax (Linaria purpurea)
Common carder bee (Bombus pascuorum)

The hairs on the abdomen of this specimen were thinned, and show grey colored tergites. As far as I know tergites are black so I’m not sure why this specimen is different.

Light brown

Common carder bee (Bombus pascuorum)
Common carder bee (Bombus pascuorum)

B. p. moorselensis

Orange brown

Common carder bee (Bombus pascuorum)

4. PARASITIC RELATIONS


References

1 wildebijen.nl, "De Nederlandse bijen en hun relaties, overzicht van in Nederland en Vlaanderen voorkomende solitaire en sociale bijen (Apidea s.l.)"

2 GOKCEZADE, J. F., et al. Feldbestimmungsschlüssel für die Hummeln Österreichs, Deutschlands und der Schweiz (Hymenoptera, Apidae).

3 Peeters, T.M.J., H. Nieuwenhuijsen, J. Smit, F. van der Meer, I.P. Raemakers, W.R.B. Heitmans, C. van Achterberg, M. Kwak, A.J. Loonstra, J. de Rond, M. Roos & M. Reemer 2012. De Nederlands bijen (Hymennoptera: Apidae s.l.). - Natuur van Nederland 11, Naturalis Biodiversity Center & European Invertebrate Survey - Nederland, Leiden.

4 DURRER, Stephan; SCHMID‐HEMPEL, Paul. Parasites and the regional distribution of bumblebee species. Ecography, 1995, 18.2: 114-122.

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