Brown Belted Bumble Bee, Bombus griseocolis

Excerpted from Bumble Bees of Wisconsin

Brown Belted Bumble Bee, Bombus griseocolis Likely the third most common of Wisconsin bumble bee species, B. griseocollis gets its name from the thin belt of red/brown hair on its second abdominal segment. The brown-belted bumble bee has one of the largest ranges of any US bumble bees, spanning coast-to-coast.

Physical Description

Hair short and even. Thorax mostly yellow, with a circular patch of all black hairs between the base of the wings. First abdominal segment fully yellow, with workers typically having a brown or red patch of hair forming a crescent on segment 2. Queens occasionally have this coloration, but also often have an entirely yellow second abdominal segment. Males with similar coloration to workers, but with a yellow hair patch on the front of the face (similar to B. impatiens). Males also lack corbiculae, or the flattened midleg of the hind leg used for transporting pollen.

Activity Period

Brown Belted Bumble Bee activity period Typical colony life cycle, with queens emerging in late spring, and peak worker number in July. New queens and drones can be found from late June to September.

Range

Brown Belted Bumble Bee, Bombus griseocolis graphic The brown-belted bumble bee can be found throughout Wisconsin.

Preferred Flowers

 Thistle
 Milkweed
 Sunflower

Bumble Bee Videos

 Buzz Pollination
 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

Bumble Bee Buzz Pollination

Bumble Bee Buzz Pollination

Only Bumble Bees do it! Buzz pollinated flowers wait until a bee comes along and vibrates at just the right frequency and out comes the pollen in a spew.

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Take The Bumble Bee Quiz

Take this quick quiz and see how much you know about Bumble Bees. This quiz is intended for fun, in a random-facts-can-be-cool kind of way.

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Caterpillar ID Guide

Identify who is nibbling on your native plants. You will find over 30 Wisconsin native butterfly caterpillars.