Bombus Hypnorum is a relative newcomer to the UK. First spotted in 2001, it has quickly spread across the country, but is not yet in all areas. It is widespread in Europe and reaches as far north as the Arctic Circle. The move to the UK, was probably overdue then and it’s most welcome as a valued and interesting pollinator.
One characteristic in particular, distinguishes it from all other british bumblebees. Whilst the natives prefer to nest underground, in small holes, the tree bumblebee prefers holes above ground in … you’ve guessed it tress. Although you might be surprised to hear it is particularly fond of nest boxes provided for the birds.
At a time when pollinators including bees are having such a rough period, the tree bumblebee is good news indeed. And with its different nesting habits, it is unlikely to compete with the native species.