A new find for me, ID verified with the bumblebee consevation trust
Found on a Inula hookerii flower in Blackburn, Lancashire,UK. A cuckoo bumblebee, like the bird it is named after, lays its eggs in another bumblebee’s nest and leaves the workers of that nest to rear the young. Of course the eggs she lays are either females or males (there are no queens). The cuckoo females emerge from hibernation in late spring or early summer, much later than ordinary bumblebee queens. So by the time the cuckoo females have emerged the bumblebee queens will have already established their nests. Cuckoo bumblebees usually have the same pattern of hair colour as the bumblebees’ nests they lay in. This one mainly attacks white tailed bumble bees.
Taken with a canon 450D and a canon 100mm macro lens.