Dangerous Bumble Bees in Bristol

European Tree Bumble Bees (Bombus hypnorum)

The Facts About Bristol's Tree Bumble Bees


What Do Tree Bumble Bees Look Like?


tree bumble bee queen
A queen tree bumble bee (Bombus hypnorum)
Tree bumble bees are very easy to spot because the colouration is so simple. They have a brown back and a white bum. Not very technical, but as the image shows, nice and easy to identify.

Are Tree Bumble Bees Dangerous?


Well Yes! The tree bumble bee is a fairly recent addition to our UK native bumble bees. In 2013 we visited almost twenty customers who had been unlucky enough to disturb these bees and been badly stung multiple times.

What was to be noted was that, as with wasps, the temperament of each nest varied. Some were amenable, but over 80% were not. Because they were in confined spaces, especially lofts, they were not viable to be removed safely and easily.

We spoke to lots of bee keepers, as did our customers, and the resounding response was not helpful. Tree bumble bees seem to be one bumble bee species that "is" recognized as a pest.

Because these bumble bees nest at height, it was builders and roofers getting attacked. But pets and the elderly were also stung badly.

First aid for Stings?

Where Are Tree Bumble Bees Found?

Most tree bumble bees nest at height, but these are the places we have found  tree bumble bees nesting:

  1. Loft spaces, beneath insulation and boards.
  2. Loft spaces in old wasp nests
  3. Bird Boxes
  4. Compost Bins
  5. BBQ's
  6. Under sheds
  7. On a garage floor
  8. Between two fences
  9. Wall Cavity
  10. Inside a bathroom extractor hose
  11. Behind fascia boards
  12. Under a concrete driveway
So you get the picture, they nest all over the place, but most commonly, as the name suggests - at height.

If you think you have tree bumble bees and would like us to take a look, why not contact your Bristol bumble bee control experts.