Do Bumble Bees Sting?

Do Bumble Bees Sting?

Do bumble bees sting?... Bumblebees are one of the many classes of bees. We have grown to be frightened by bees of any kind and it is no surprise that we see one.

Bees generally tend to mind their own business but when provoked they do sting.

Do Bumble Bees Sting?


There is no telling out of all those types do all of them have the same defense mechanism, which brings us to the question that ‘do bumble bees sting’.

Yes, they do. Bumblebees are fascinating little creatures. The females are the ones with a sting.

They tend not to be aggressive while talking on a general basis but can be a little feisty if meddled with.

They are found in the upper regions of the northern hemisphere. Now there is a misconception about most bees that they die after they sting someone.

This holds true for honeybees not fully though because they die only when they sting something with a hard skin.

When they do that the sting remains attached to the victim, but it is a vital part for the honeybee as they tore up their abdomen when they leave the sting there.

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Ideally saying they leave all the venom they have with the victim.

They do not die just as they sting but after 25 minutes or so it happens. This is due to the shape of the sting that they possess.

Honeybees have a barb in their stinger. In the case of bumblebees, they have a smaller and sharper stinger which helps them to sting a person more than just once, which can potentially be more harmful.

Do Bumble Bees Sting?


They generally do not sting without a reason so, if they are around you just get away and pay them no heed to them. Even if they do sting, it is not lethal.

But precautions should be taken, if you are allergic to the poison and an allergic reaction starts and proper treatment is not given, there is a chance that the person might die. Generally, they are not aggressive.

There have been cases when they show aggression, it is seen that they are trying to protect their home.

Normally a person should be able to know if they are near a hive above the ground but that is not always the case.

The bumblebees make their nest below ground, generally not by themselves. The burrows formally made by mice, snakes etc make a good home for them.

Where do bumble bees live –

Bumblebees are also social and live in colonies, but they do not make very large colonies.

Their colonies consist of mostly 250-300 members. To make the comparison easy let’s see the case of honeybees.

In western countries, the beehives of honeybees can have approximately 60,000 total members. This drives us to the conclusion that they do not need much space.

They can live underground, considering their numbers it is not very difficult to find such small burrowing places like holes made by mice, places behind wooden logs, below heaps of leaves etc.

At times, they make nests above ground in places with a small ceiling, cramped little warehouse etc.

Do Bumble Bees Sting?

Do bumblebees make honey –

It is another popular misconception. No, they do not produce honey.

They feed on nectar but they do not store it. Only honeybees are responsible for making honey.

The amount of honey produced is directly proportional to the size of the hive. Considering their number, even if they made honey it wouldn’t be anywhere near the amount of honey produced by honeybees.

What do bumble bees eat –

They do not have any special diet, which means they live on the nectar of the flowers.

But unlike some of their relatives, they have a tendency to choose between flowers having low or high pollen content.

They are more likely to get the nectar from flowers having a large amount of pollen.

They tend to take in various different kinds of pollen since they need them to perform various functions in their body.

One type might provide carbohydrate while the other may provide lipids etc. Basically saying they prefer nectar with higher P:L ratio(protein ratio lipid).

History of bumble bees -

They are very closely related to ants and wasps. It is now known that bees evolved from wasps. the Sphecidae are from whom we suppose these fascinating insects were evolved.

The wasps as we know are predator species. They depend upon other creatures for their nutrition.

It might be unsettling but they lay eggs inside their prey and the babies eat the prey from inside out.

The Sphecidae, however, decided to take pollen as the mode of nutrition.

Now, in the old days when bees were not around, the plants had to produce a lot of pollen in order to asexually reproduce, even then the chances of reaching the pollen to it’s destined position are pretty low.

This makes the pollen content in the environment very high.

Since the pollen is very rich in nutrition, the wasps begin to take it and as a result, it also benefited the plants as it increased the chance of reproduction process to happen.

The need for consumption of other insects was no more and with time wasps evolved to be bees.

Early bumblebee

Early bumble bee or bombus pratorum makes nests early in the year (January or February). Most bumblebees the colony cycle starts later.

The name EARLY BUMBLEBEE hence comes from this context. Like most of the colonized insects, they are also led by a queen but unlike their other relatives, they tend to discipline the underlings using strict behavior and not by pheromones.

Their abundance is often found in Europe and Asia. They are slightly smaller than the other bumblebees and like them, they also do not produce honey.

They are excellent when it comes to pollinating flowers. As it is well known that bumblebees are very selective towards what they eat but these species do not tend to care much about that. They are also generally calm and only attack if provoked.

Rhythm Dhami

A deep-rooted person who has made an investigation of regular history since childhood or so - longer than I can recollect. An interest in wildlife has developed into wonder with all of nature, and an unquenchable interest to take in more..

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