[NAFEX] Bumble aggression

Bob Kelly Bkelly66 at bellsouth.net
Mon Apr 21 14:19:23 EDT 2003

Re: [NAFEX] bumble bee as pollinatorYeah, Gene.  That is more like my experience.  When growing up in the Mississippi Delta, I can remember accidentally disturbing  bumblebee nests.  The sting would almost knock you down. (Like a hornet, I was told, tho I was never stung by one of those.) While the sting was very potent, the pain did not linger, the way a yellow jacket sting would (like for several days).

Their procedure, when disturbed, was to emerge from their hole in the ground, and begin flying in an ever widening circle at about 3 feet above the ground.  Supposedly their vision is poor, so this is their search procedure.  If one realized he had disturbed the nest, he had time to retreat.

Bob Kelly
NW Mississippi Zone 7b

----- Original Message ----- 
  From: Gene Spears 
  To: 'North American Fruit Explorers' 
  Sent: Monday, April 21, 2003 1:00 PM
  Subject: [NAFEX] Bumble aggression

      In my experience, disturbing a wild bumblebee nest is a "stimulating" event.  Sometimes, I'll accidentally scythe around a nest entrance & get an unexpected bit of sprint training, usually after a very painful sting or two.  Not quite as bad as yellow jackets for mass attacks, but still pretty aggressive....

  spears at lmc.edu
    -----Original Message-----
    From: Lon J. Rombough [mailto:lonrom at hevanet.com]
    Sent: Monday, April 21, 2003 1:53 PM
    To: North American Fruit Explorers
    Subject: Re: [NAFEX] bumble bee as pollinator

    That's the most aggressive behavior I've ever heard of in bumble bees.  Are you sure you didn't have a species of underground living wasp?  
    -Lon Rombough

      From: "Bruce Hansen" <brucehansen at acd.net>
      Reply-To: North American Fruit Explorers <nafex at lists.ibiblio.org>
      Date: Mon, 21 Apr 2003 13:49:38 -0400
      To: "North American Fruit Explorers" <nafex at lists.ibiblio.org>
      Subject: RE: [NAFEX] bumble bee as pollinator


      I have found a similar thing with bumble bees. However, if you disturb their
      nest they will chase you. I did this and was chased from the barn to the
      house (100 yds)where, to escape, I closed the screen door behind me. The bee
      buzzed the screen several times and then waited for me to come out.

    Bruce z5 MI


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