Bombus (Bombus) cryptarum



Conservation status

Data deficient-first identified as being present in Ireland in 2006

Species Biology


  • This species can only be reliably distinguished from its sister species (Bombus lucorum and Bombus magnus) by molecular analysis. 
  • Unless accompanied by DNA analysis, all should be recorded as 'Bombus lucorum'. They are treated as the sister complex
  • Clean white tail
  • Queens have one lemon yellow band on the thorax and one on the abdomen
  • It is said that the yellow thorax band is often more s-shaped and may reach down the side of the body and underneath the wings in queens (as in B. magnus). However, research has shown it is impossible to reliably distinguish B. cryptarum from B. lucorum and B. magnus without molecular analysis. See Murray T.E., Fitzpatrick Ú., Brown M.J.F. & Paxton R.J. (2008). Cryptic diversity in a widespread bumble bee complex revealed using mitochondrial DNA RFLPs. Conservation Genetics 9: 653-666.


Habitat associations, if any, are not yet known in Ireland

Flight period

Irish data not yet available

Nesting biology

Nests underground in cavaties

Flowers visited



World distribution(GBIF)

Oriental, Japanese, Palaearctic, Arctic, W Nearctic regions

Temporal change

Records submitted to Data Centre in 2019

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Conservation status: FitzPatrick Ú., Murray T.E., Byrne A., Paxton R.J., Brown M.J.F. (2006) Regional Red List of Irish Bees, Publ. Rep. to National Parks and Wildlife Service (Ireland) and Environment and Heritage Service (N. Ireland).

Flowers visited & World distribution: Westrich, P. (1989) Die Wildbienen Baden-Württembergs. Eugen Ulmer, Stuttgart, Germany.