bumblebee bombus terrestrial

Humble Bumblebees

The much loved Bumblebee (bombus genus) with their rambling bumbling gait and buzzy noise, round bodies covered in soft yellow and black hair that gives them a fuzzy appearance... you could just cuddle them.  Despite being mostly peaceful, they will sting when they feel cornered or when their hive is disturbed.

There are over 250 species of bumblebee worldwide, but NZ only has four introduced species.  Bombus terrestrial was introduced into New Zealand around 1885, specifically to assist with the pollination of red clover.  These days, it is one of the main species used in greenhouse pollination.

The worldwide decline of the bee has not excluded the bumblebee, with some species now on the endangered list.  The removal of wildflowers from their habitat is contributing to its decline.
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