pompey_gal
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Joined: Mon Jul 12, 2010 4:29 pm
Location: upstate ny

Disturbed a Bumblebee Nest...help!

Hello all...I am new here, so please excuse me if I have posted this in the incorrect spot!

I am working to reduce the area of lawn that i have and in some spots near the house i would like to place some flower gardens. i staked out the "phase 1" area yesterday and hubby started tilling. was going well until he apparently hit a bumblebee nest.

he went back out later on and saw what he believed was a portion of their nest (there were several bees on it), so he moved it to the edge of the woods. however, it is now about 24 hours later and the bees are still flitting all over the tilled area (poor things...they're probably so confused).

any ideas on what to do here? we were planning to till again later this week, then spread composted manure and till again, then start planting next month. but, man, these bees are all over the place! any thoughts on how i can get them to settle down and set up camp somewhere else? i like bumblebees as much as the next gardener, but really prefer their nest not be located within my garden!!

thanks for any help!
kristin

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applestar
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Location: Zone 6, NJ (3/M)4/E ~ 10/M

I'm sure better experienced members will give you the right advice, but my guess is that the Queen wasn't in the portion of the nest you moved, and is possibly still somewhere (buried?) in the tilled area.

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microcollie
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Location: Western MA

Unlike honeybees, bumblebees don't reuse their nest year after year. The nest will only be active this season. Any chance that you can live with them for the rest of the summer? They are beneficial insects and it would be a shame to have to kill them, but I'm not sure that other options are viable. Their nests are not mobile in the way that honeybees are.

pompey_gal
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Joined: Mon Jul 12, 2010 4:29 pm
Location: upstate ny

thanks!

thanks for the help...they seem to have settled down/gone away. i could muster up all my courage (i have a bee phobia!) and work alongside them as i do understand their benefits...only problem is i can't tell where their nest/queen might be now that we tilled everything up.

i think i'll just watch them for a day and see if i can observe if they are coming in/out of a certain spot and then avoid it with the tiller. unfortunately, i think we killed the nest :oops:

thanks again,
kristin

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Sage Hermit
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Location: Finlaysen, MN Coniferous Forest

Thats snow on my deck

Don't worry about the bumble bees. Honor them by moving on and if I was in your shoes I would place lots of flowers for them this year and every year. For every set of plants you plant for yourself add 1 plant for the bumble bees and they will come back. Bees will help your garden but if you accidentally disrupt their nest they will forgive you at the cost of say 10 sunflowers. Well they would for me anyway.
One person here I forget who but they had bumble bees or honey bees in their compost! I think they actually let them bee... get it!?

I actually kept a yellow jacket in my house and fed it honey. It would come to feed in the container I had with morning glories and tomato and clovers all winter, in MN!! I released it in the early spring finally and same deal happened. It came back or its brood came back in the fall but did not last as long. I think I forgot to feed it.
[img]https://i199.photobucket.com/albums/aa267/adaba/DSCN0035.jpg[/img]
You can solve all your problems in a garden/laboratory.

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