In most cases, having a bumble bee family in the house poses no problems. They are, as mentioned, peaceful, and they make themselves useful by pollinating crops in the garden. In the rare cases when they are not tolerated, they can be controlled in the same manner as honeybees.

Bumblebee stings

Most bumblebees are so good-natured that people think they cannot sting. This is, however, not the case. Bumblebees have a powerful stinger and venom glands. By virtue of their size, the sting is painful.


High season for bumblebee

Fig. 47. There interest in bees (Fig. 46) and bumblebees peak during the in the hottest time of the year.



In Denmark, there is a dozen species of the usually big, strong and furry bumblebees of the genus Bombus. In contrast to honey bees bumble bee colonies only live one season. In the autumn all the workers and the old queen die. There are some young queens who – after having mated – goes into hibernation and thereby saving the family through the cold period. Early the next spring, they come out and find suitable places to establish new colonies.

Most bumble bees construct their nests in the ground, in an abandoned mouse nest or between stones in a stone wall. An empty nesting box for titmice, a cavity wall, a crawl space or an insulation mat in an attic are also good places for a bumblebee nest. The nest is lined with vegetable fibers, moss or hair, and the workers build brownish wax pots used to store eggs and food supplies. The colonies are not very large – and often consist of a maximum of 400-500 members.