Best Beloved and I often find struggling bumblebees on garden pathways and the lawn. They may be exhausted by flying in the wind, have worked too hard without rest or refreshment, they may be sick, or even too cold. (If their wings are ragged, they may simply be very old.)
The quickest way to revive a struggling bumblebee is with a sugary solution. (Never a honey solution, though. Bees can catch viruses if they eat honey from other hives.)
While enjoying a lovely spot of tea outside at Syke Farm Tearoom, BB and I took note of a large bumblebee’s drunken descent to our table. When it landed, it remained immobile.
Emergency rations were called for. A handy sugar cube with a couple of drops of water was quickly administered.
Ms. Bumble liked it.
She liked it very much!
Why do we think she’s a female? Well, she’s a White-tailed Bumblebee. White-tailed queens and workers have a pure white tail and two lemon-yellow bands. The males have more yellow hair on the abdomen, and yellow tufts on the head and face. Males have longer antennae, too.
When she’d lapped up her fill, Ms. Bumble took it upon herself to make friends with BB.
She climbed up and had a bit of a walkabout on his hand.
So comfortable and full was she, that a nap was in order. She found a warm spot, folded down her antennae and nodded off.
Luckily, we had plenty of time to sit in the sun and relax with Ms. Bumble before she buzzed off to the autumnal blooms of Syke Farm.
BB, the Bumblebee Whisperer. He has me charmed, too.
P.S. We cleaned up the sugary puddle before leaving.