Bumble opportunity?
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Cullman, Alabama, USA
    Posts
    1,240

    Lightbulb Bumble opportunity?

    While gatherig materials to make some poorly timed splits yesterday ( weather way too chilly), I found several new wasp nests in my stored nucs & hives, & also one bumble bee.
    The red wasps were smushed, the bumble was stored in a pickle jar with the lid loose, on my work table as I was prepping the honey bee equipment.. I figured out that this was not a good situation, as the jar would soon be knocked off & broken, & I would have broken glass to clean up and a bumble loose in the house. I located a quart feeder jar & canning jar ring, but not a screen cover. But a couple of layers of wet paper towel, so she has water if she wants it. I added a tiny wad of paper towel soaked in sugar syrup, just for entertainment.
    By this time my Bumble queen, it is early April in North Alabama, so I am pretty sure she is an over-wintered queen, is getting pretty "flighty", so I put her back outside to chill out for a bit. 40-ish degrees F out there. When she has cooled to the crawling numbly stage again, I dump her into the new jar, put her in a safer place, cover her jar with a cloth to block the light , to calm her, & carry on with my other project.
    My initial thought was how cool it would be to have a Bumble observation hive ( out doors, not in my house! ),
    At breakfast this morning, I remember her, & bring her up to watch her as I eat. She seems to be enjoying the sugar soaked paper towel, & has calmed down a lot, though still attracted to the light.

    As best I can tell from http://www.bumblebee.org/NorthAmerica.htm , she is Bombus griseocollis .
    It is not mentioned if she is endangered.
    The bumblebee.org site has instructions for making a nest box, etc. and as cool as it would be, I think I will release her out doors later today, when the temperature warms up a bit.
    ( my honey bee operations, while ok to my goals, does not point to great success keeping Bumbles )
    I might put her in a wine bottle of nesting materials, since my wife has banished glass objects from our veggie garden this year, & we have a few, But, I suspect a 750ml wine bottle would be too small.
    Maybe I can find a half gallon or gallon jug in the basement for her on that east facing bank by the pond .... CE
    Started summer of 2013, just another new guy, tinkering with bees.

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Cullman, Alabama, USA
    Posts
    1,240

    Question Re: Bumble opportunity?

    The bumble bee website says to use cotton batting batting, rather than surgical cotton as a nesting material.
    What about clothes dryer lint? ( I have plenty ) Thanks, CE
    Started summer of 2013, just another new guy, tinkering with bees.

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Pueblo, Colorado, USA
    Posts
    1,527

    Default Re: Bumble opportunity?

    I use stuffing from pillows as nesting material.
    Zone 5 @ 4700 ft. High Desert

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