Black and Gold Bumble Bee, Bombus auricomus
Excerpted from Bumble Bees of Wisconsin
One of our largest bumble bee species. Flying by your head, they’ll sound like a helicopter.
Very large bodied bees, both workers and queens. Body hair short length and even. Thorax is black
for the anterior (front) third, and then mostly black on the posterior (back) with some yellow hairs
occasionally intermixed. First abdominal segment mostly black, with segments two and three yellow.
Black tail. Males with an entirely yellow first abdominal segment and conspicuous yellow hairs on the
face. Males also lack corbiculae.
Queens remain active throughout the season, while workers and males only around in the late part of
the season in July and August.
Historical data suggest mostly a southern distribution for this species, however they seem to be doing
well in most agricultural areas and may be expanding their range northward in accordance with a
Slo-Mo Footage of a Bumble Bee Dislodging Pollen
Look Inside a Bumblebee Nest
How to Build a Bumble Bee House
Development of Colony and Nest in the Bumblebee