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What's wrong with this bumble bee?


 
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Roger
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PostPosted: Tue May 05, 2015 10:10 am    Post subject: What's wrong with this bumble bee? Reply with quote

I found this bumble bee while digging in a client's garden. It couldn't fly so I looked closely and noticed all these parasite type of things stuck to it. Does anyone know what it is? In all my years of watching insects I have never come across this...


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Roger Pessoa
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tagwex
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PostPosted: Tue May 05, 2015 10:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

You must have been doing my garden so. I found one the exact same only two days ago.
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James Kilkelly
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PostPosted: Tue May 05, 2015 11:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

To me those look more like seeds stuck to the hairs of the bee.
The Varroa Destructor parasite which has been blamed by some for the decline in bee numbers is much darker in colour and a different shape......



I would be interested to hear others input on Roger's image as I would love to get to the bottom of it.

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tagwex
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PostPosted: Tue May 05, 2015 1:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well the 'seeds' that I seen were crawling.
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Its my field. Its my child. I nursed it. I nourished it. I saw to its every want. I dug the rocks out of it with my bare hands and I made a living thing of it!

This boy can really sing http://youtu.be/Dgv78D2duBE
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medieval knievel
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PostPosted: Tue May 05, 2015 5:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

it'd be worth posting this to the nature & birdwatching forum on boards.ie
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Roger
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PostPosted: Tue May 05, 2015 5:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

As long as it's not something like Varroa! I hate the idea of something so destructive... Sad I didn't notice them moving to be honest but I didn't spend to much time watching it.
Tagwex, this one is in Westmeath and was taken last summer... It would be too much of a stretch for me to go to Wexford to garden anyway!! Wink
Medieval Knievel, I'm not a member on boards.ie, can I still post on it?

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medieval knievel
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PostPosted: Tue May 05, 2015 7:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

no, you need to be a member; and if memory serves, you need 50 posts before you can post links or photos.
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medieval knievel
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PostPosted: Tue May 05, 2015 7:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

however, this seems worth a read:

http://www.theguardian.com/environment/the-northerner/2013/may/22/crook-county-durham-bees-infested-mites
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Good guy
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PostPosted: Tue May 05, 2015 9:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It would be worth mailing your photo to Michael Viney who writes a nature/environment column in the Irish Times.
Michael and Ethna Viney are at viney@anu.ie
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tagwex
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PostPosted: Tue May 05, 2015 9:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Roger wrote:
It would be too much of a stretch for me to go to Wexford to garden anyway!!

And you waited this long to query it........ Should have brought the poor thing to the vets!!!
PS. I need all the help I can get no matter where it comes from.

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Its my field. Its my child. I nursed it. I nourished it. I saw to its every want. I dug the rocks out of it with my bare hands and I made a living thing of it!

This boy can really sing http://youtu.be/Dgv78D2duBE
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Roger
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PostPosted: Wed May 06, 2015 5:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lol! Tagwex, I spend so much time gardening I find little time to be online! So when I do I post all I can think of... even if it's a year later. And the last time I brought an injured butterfly to the vet I got thrown out!! Wink Laughing
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Roger Pessoa
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Roger
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PostPosted: Wed May 06, 2015 5:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well Medieval Knievel, that pic on the article looks very similar to mine and I must admit I am rather relieved that their do not seem to harm the host! Many thanks for the link, it was very interesting!! Wink
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Roger Pessoa
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Roger
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PostPosted: Wed May 06, 2015 5:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

In the meantime no one seems to know what the grub on my other post is... no replies so far... maybe I found a new specie and will get to name it after me!!! Smile
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Roger Pessoa
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tagwex
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PostPosted: Wed May 06, 2015 7:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Put it in a jar and when it pupates send us a photo and one of us might tell you what it is! I think Hannibal Lector swallowed one of those.
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Its my field. Its my child. I nursed it. I nourished it. I saw to its every want. I dug the rocks out of it with my bare hands and I made a living thing of it!

This boy can really sing http://youtu.be/Dgv78D2duBE
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Greengage
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PostPosted: Fri May 08, 2015 6:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The good news is that most of the mite species that live with bumblebees are fairly harmless to them and are simply clinging to the bumblebee so that they can be transported to new nests. When in the nest, the mites usually feed upon the wax, pollen, nest debris, and other small insects, so do not feed on the bees. Then, when they reach a certain stage in their life cycle, the mites cling to worker bees, and are transported onto flowers. From these flowers, the mites then attach to other visiting bees, and are transported to new nests.

However, the mites may present a problem if an individual bumblebee becomes so heavily infested that it is unable to fly because of the weight of the mites. If this happens, you can try to remove some of the mites by gently brushing them with a childs paintbrush.
or you could try this if your concerned, http://www.uksafari.com/bumblebees3.htm
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