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Buff-Tailed Bumblebee Video Stock Footage

This first phase can last a variable amount of time in B. terrestris, after which a switch point is reached, and the queen begins to lay some unfertilized eggs, which develop into males. When the male drones emerge from the nest, they do not return, foraging only for themselves. They seek out emerging queens and mate with them. The remaining diploid eggs hatch into larvae that receive extra food and pupate to become new queens. The queen can use pheromones to discourage the workers' inclination to invest more in these larvae, thereby ensuring that not too many become queens. The resolution of this worker/queen conflict can be complex and is discussed below. The colony persists until fall in temperate zones and then workers begin to lay unfertilized eggs that if they mature will become males. At this point, outright aggression among workers and between the queen and workers begins. This is a predictable time point that occurs about 30 days into the colony cycle in very temperate climates. Usually, the worker-queen conflict will force the queen out and the new workers will become queenless. A "false queen" might take control of the colony for a short period. The newly emerged queens sometimes act as workers and help to raise another brood of queens. During this time they daily leave the nest looking for food, during which time they may mate. Eventually they find a site to dig a “hibernaculum” where they will hibernate until the next spring, when they emerge, seek food — p...Learn more about Buff-Tailed Bumblebee


View related species in family group: Bee

Animalia: Arthropoda: Hymenoptera: Insecta: Apidae: Bombus terrestris

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