Blooms for Bees

Blooms for Bees

Southern Cuckoo Bee

Bombus vestalis

One of the most common and widespread cuckoo bees, particularly in the south of England.

Appearance

Newly emerged females have a ginger collar, which fades to yellow. The rest of the body is black, with a white tail preceded by bright yellow patches on either side.

Males have similar markings, but usually have yellow hairs where the thorax and abdomen meet, and their hair is the shortest and neatest of any male cuckoo bee.

Southern cuckoo bee

About the bee

– ginger collar
– bright yellow patches before white tail
– males have short, neat hair

Size

– Female: 18mm
– Male: 14mm

Tongue length

– Short

Host

The Buff-tailed Bumblebee

Map and flight periods

bombus-vestalis-map

Similar species

The Gypsy Cuckoo Bee is very similar but usually smaller. Females are a paler charcoal-black, have a more yellow collar and often have yellow hairs where the thorax and abdomen meet. Males have longer hair, with more yellow where the thorax and abdomen meet, and the yellow patches before the white tail are never very bright (although this can be hard to see late in the season when hairs have faded).

- OR -

Email address required

Show Password required

By signing in to this website you are agreeing to the Terms and conditions of use

Forgot your password?

Display name missing

Invalid email address

Show Passwords do not match

Show Passwords do not match

By signing up to this website you are agreeing to the Terms and conditions of use


Lost your password? Please enter your email address. You will receive a link to create a new password.

Please note that this will reset your password for all sites in the CS Portal.

Error message here!

Back to log-in