Species Champions: Garden bumblebee

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Garden bumblebees are distinctively large, placid bumblebees which can be found in most gardens, parks and wild areas.

Its Latin name is Bombus hortorum. It has the longest tongue of any bumblebee, and happily feeds on long flowers such as foxglove which other species may struggle with. Its tongue is so long that it often flies between flowers with its tongue sticking out rather than drawing it in!

Action Needed

  1. Help promote action to increase wildlife friendly planting in gardens and municipal schemes, providing pollen and nectar continuously from March to September.
  2. Help raise awareness of our BeeWalk citizen science programme, which records essential data about bumblebee populations.
  3. Ensure the Pollinator Strategy for Scotland (a priority of the Scottish Biodiversity Strategy) is fully implemented.

Threats

Decline in suitable forage: Many of the plants found in gardens and parks are bred by horticulturalists to be bright and colourful, but contain no nectar or pollen for bees to feed on. Additionally, long flowers such as the ones the Garden bumblebee prefers are in greater decline than the shorter flowers which are suitable for the more generalist feeders.

MSP Species Champion

Colin Beattie

Member for: Midlothian North and Musselburgh

Party: Scottish National Party

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