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Bombus bifarius Cresson, 1878
Bombus andamanus Gribodo, 1882, identity uncertain; Bombus edwardsii var kenoyeri Cockerell, 1915; Bombus edwardsii var fuscifrons Swenk, 1938

Life   Insecta   Hymenoptera   Apoidea   Apidae   Bombus
Subgenus: Pyrobombus

Bombus bifarius, -side 2012-07-09-17.43.31
© Copyright source/photographer · 9
Bombus bifarius, -side 2012-07-09-17.43.31

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IDnature guides

    Williams, Paul H., Robbin W. Thorp, Leif L. Richardson, and Sheila R. Colla. Bumble Bees of North America: An Identification Guide. Princeton University Press, 2014. http://www.jstor.org/stable/j.ctt6wpzr9. - has the best modern color guides for identification of both sexes, microscopic identification characters, range and natural history notes.

    Gives a common name of Two Form Bumble Bee

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Bombus bifarius, female, face
Smithsonian Institution, Entomology Department · 9
Bombus bifarius, female, face
Bombus bifarius, female, side
Smithsonian Institution, Entomology Department · 9
Bombus bifarius, female, side

Bombus bifarius, female, top
Smithsonian Institution, Entomology Department · 9
Bombus bifarius, female, top
Bombus bifarius, female, wing
Smithsonian Institution, Entomology Department · 9
Bombus bifarius, female, wing

Bombus bifarius MALE
© Copyright Laurence Packer 2014 · 7
Bombus bifarius MALE
Bombus bifarius
© Copyright John Ascher, 2006-2014 · 7
Bombus bifarius

Bombus bifarius
© Copyright John Ascher, 2006-2014 · 6
Bombus bifarius
Bombus bifarius, F, Face, MT, Flathead Co
© Copyright source/photographer · 5
Bombus bifarius, F, Face, MT, Flathead Co

Bombus bifarius, back
© Copyright source/photographer · 5
Bombus bifarius, back
Bombus bifarius, back
© Copyright source/photographer · 5
Bombus bifarius, back

Bombus bifarius, back, f, Mariposa CA
© Copyright source/photographer · 5
Bombus bifarius, back, f, Mariposa CA
Bombus bifarius, face, f, Mariposa CA
© Copyright source/photographer · 5
Bombus bifarius, face, f, Mariposa CA

Bombus bifarius, right, f, Mariposa CA
© Copyright source/photographer · 5
Bombus bifarius, right, f, Mariposa CA
Bombus bifarius, back, f, Mariposa CA
© Copyright source/photographer · 5
Bombus bifarius, back, f, Mariposa CA
Extracted from Jonathan Koch, James Strange, Paul Williams.2012. Bumble Bees of the Western United States. A product of the U.S. Forest Service and the Pollinator Partnership with funding from the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation

Two form bumble bee

Status: Very common

Select food plant genera: Melilotus, Lupinus, Aster, Senecio, Chrysothamnus, Cirsium

Tongue Length: Medium

Distribution: From the Pacific coast to the Rocky Mountains; from Arizona to Alaska; a dark form (B. bifarius nearcticus) in the north and west; a red form (B. bifarius bifarius) found in the south and east of the range

Can be confused with B. huntii, B. melanopygus, B. mixtus, B. rufocinctus, and B. sylvicola

Thorax anterior to black band between wing bases yellow or white and sometimes cloudy in appearance, scutellum with pale or yellow patches entirely divided by a black posteriorly directed triangle, T1 yellow or pale white, T2 and T3 completely black or red, or black and red admixture, T4 yellow, T5 and T6 black. Face square.

Mid leg basitarsus with the distal posterior corner rounded. Cheek length as long as broad. Hair of the face and top of head predominately yellow or pale sometimes with black admixture. On the side of the thorax, the lower anterior surface with long, predominantly yellow, or pale yellow hair, corbicular fringes red. Hair length medium

Extracted from Wallace E. LaBerge and Morgan C. Webb. (1962). The Bumblebees of Nebraska (Hymenoptera, Apidae, Bombinae). University of Nebraska College of Agriculture.
T his is a common western species of bumblebee which enters Nebraska only in the westernmost counties. Females: Head with hairs white to pale yellow with abundant black in ocellar areas between apices of compound eyes; thorax with sides with hairs largely cinereous to yellow, often black posteriorly and on lower parts, dorsum cinereous to yellow anteriorly with a broad interalar band of black and scutellum with a distinct mediobasal triangular area of black hairs; tergum l with hairs yellow, occasionally black basally, rarely yellow-orange; terga 2 and 3 with pile pale orange to orange-red, often black mediobasally on tergum 2 and occasionally terga 2 and 3 entirely black; tergum 4 yellow; terga 5 and 6 with black pile; leg hairs black except hind tibiae with corbicular fringe pale, ferruginous and outer surfaces hind basitarsi with short hairs pale; malar space about as long medially as broad; ocelli placed on supraorbital line. T he color of this species is highly variable and Stephen's ( 1957) excellent description and figures of this variation ought to be consulted. Males: Head hairs yellow ·with band of black between apices of compound eyes; thorax with yellow pile except broad interalar band of black and mediobasal triangular area on scutellum; tergum 1 with pile yellow; terga 2 and 3 with pile yellow, yellow apically and black basally, or black, occasionally tinged with orange-reel; tergum 4 with pile yellow; terga 5-7 with pile black, but often some yellow at sides; leg hairs yellow, integument of tarsi ferruginous; malar space about as long medially as broad; first flagellar segment longer than second, subequal to third.
Locality Records: Since this bee has been collected in Nebraska only twice, the data are given in full. SCOTTS BLUFF COUNTY: 1 queen from Mitchell, collected by L. M. Gates, .June 20, 1913. SIOUX COUNT Y: l worker from War Bonnet Canyon, collected on Verbena sp. by M.A. Carriker, July 23, 1901. T he Sioux County record was reported by Swenk (1907) as a specimen of B. edwardsii, but it is no longer in the collection of the University of Nebraska and has not been verified by the authors.

Extracted from Bumble Bees and Cuckoo Bumble Bees of California by Thorp, R. (1983).

Discussion. B. bifarius belongs to the species group which includes B. huntii and vosnesenskli, and is most closely related to B. huntii. The California color form ("nearcticus" populations) differs from B. huntii in having the yellow hair of the scutellum divided into the lateral patches by a central V-shaped notch, and the usual absence of red hair on metasomal tergites 2 and 3. . This widespread western montane bumble bee has two extreme color forms. The nominate form occurs in the Rocky Mountain regions and has considerable red hair on tergites 2 and 3. The most common form ("nearcticus" populations) occurs throughout the range of the species and is the dominant form in the Cascade-Sierran ranges. It lacks red hair on tergites 2 and 3. These color extremes intergrade over a wide range, and occasional red males are found in California. Thus subspecific status is unwarranted. The nest biology of this species is discussed by Hobbs (1967b). We found one nest in the Sierra Nevada (El Dorado Co., 2490 m) in an old rodent burrow beneath a pile of rocks.

Scientific source:

Supported by

Hosts · map
FamilyScientific name @ source (records)
Apiaceae  Sphenosciadium capitellatum @ BBSL__JPS (1)
Asteraceae  Artemisia bolanderi @ BBSL__JPS (2)

Aster sp @ BBSL__JPS (38); BBSL (5)

Aster @ AMNH_BEE (2)

Bellis sp @ BBSL__JPS (7)

Chrysothamnus greenei @ BBSL__JPS (2); EMEC_JPS__JPS (2)

Chrysothamnus nauseosus @ BBSL__JPS (1)

Chrysothamnus parryi @ DART_ENT (1)

Chrysothamnus sp @ BBSL__JPS (2)

Cirsium lanceolatum @ BBSL__JPS (9)

Cirsium sp @ BBSL__JPS (1)

Ericameria parryi @ RMBL_ENT (2)

Ericameria sp @ BBSL__JPS (16)

Grindelia sp @ BBSL__JPS (1); BBSL (1)

Grindelia squarrosa @ UCRC_ENT (2)

Haplopappus bloomeri @ BBSL__JPS (9)

Helenium sp @ BBSL__JPS (4)

Helianthella quinquenervis @ RMBL_ENT (13)

Heliomeris multiflora @ RMBL_ENT (75)

Heterotheca villosa @ RMBL_ENT (11)

Hymenoxys hoopesii @ RMBL_ENT (2)

Machaeranthera sp @ BBSL__JPS (2)

Ratibida sp @ BBSL__JPS (2)

Rudbeckia sp @ BBSL__JPS (2)

Rudbeckia @ AMNH_BEE (4)

Senecio bigelovii @ RMBL_ENT (1)

Senecio sp @ BBSL__JPS (7)

Senecio @ AMNH_BEE (1); RMBL_ENT (6)

Solidago sp @ BBSL__JPS (10)

Solidago @ UCRC_ENT (3); EMEC_JPS__JPS (1)

Taraxacum campylodes @ RMBL_ENT (1)

Taraxacum officinale @ BBSL__JPS (2)

Taraxacum vulgare @ UCRC_ENT (1)

Wyethia amplexicaulis @ RMBL_ENT (3)
Berberidaceae  Berberis sp @ BBSL__OS (1)
Boraginaceae  Mertensia lanceolata @ UCRC_ENT (1)

Phacelia @ EMEC_JPS__JPS (3)
Capparaceae  Cleome sp @ BBSL (1)
Caprifoliaceae  Symphoricarpos racemosus @ BBSL__JPS (1)

Symphoricarpos sp @ BBSL__JPS (7)
Crassulaceae  Sedum stenopetalum @ UCRC_ENT (1)
Fabaceae  Lupinus albus @ RMBL_ENT (2)

Lupinus argenteus @ BBSL (1)

Lupinus latifolius @ BBSL__JPS (1)

Lupinus sp @ BBSL__JPS (2); BBSL (2)

Lupinus @ LACM_ENTB (4); RMBL_ENT (2)

Melilotus officinalis @ BBSL__JPS (75)

Melilotus sp @ BBSL__JPS (12)

Trifolium dasyphyllum @ RMBL_ENT (1)

Trifolium sp @ BBSL__JPS (1)

Trifolium @ AMNH_BEE (1)
Freilich, j.  1630 @ JRYA__OLYM (1)
Gentianaceae  Frasera speciosa @ BBSL__JPS (15); UCRC_ENT (1); RMBL_ENT (1)

Gentiana parryi @ RMBL_ENT (3)
Geraniaceae  Geranium richardsonii @ RMBL_ENT (1)

Geranium sp @ BBSL (1)
Grossulariaceae  Ribes @ AMNH_BEE (4)
Herndon, j.d.  1799 @ JRYA__OLYM (9)
Hydrophyllaceae  Phacelia linearis @ BBSL (1)
Lamiaceae  Agastache urticifolia @ I_JSA (2)

Monarda sp @ BBSL__JPS (1)

Monardella sp @ BBSL__JPS (4)

Monardella @ AMNH_BEE (4)
Larson, l.  1731 @ JRYA__NOCA (2)

2023 @ JRYA__NOCA (5)
Loasaceae  Mentzelia @ EMEC_JPS__JPS (1)
Malvaceae  Sidalcea oregana @ BBSL (2); EMEC_JPS__JPS (1)
Onagraceae  Chamerion angustifolium @ RMBL_ENT (1)

Clarkia amoena @ BBSL__JPS (2)

Epilobium angustifolium @ BBSL__JPS (5); AMNH_BEE (1)
Paeoniaceae  Paeonia brownii @ AMNH_BEE (1)
Plantaginaceae  Linaria vulgaris @ UCRC_ENT (1); RMBL_ENT (1)

Penstemon alpinus @ UCRC_ENT (1)

Penstemon glaber @ AMNH_BEE (1)

Penstemon @ UCRC_ENT (1)
Polycitoridae  Salix sp @ BBSL__JPS (13)
Polygonaceae  Eriogonum latifolium @ BBSL__JPS (1)

Eriogonum sp @ BBSL__JPS (3)
Primulaceae  Dodecatheon jeffreyi @ BBSL__JPS (2)
Ranunculaceae  Clematis sp @ BBSL__JPS (1)

Delphinium barbeyi @ RMBL_ENT (2)
Rosaceae  Potentilla glandulosa @ BBSL__JPS (3); UCRC_ENT (1)

Potentilla gracilis @ RMBL_ENT (1)

Potentilla sp @ BBSL__JPS (3)

Potentilla @ RMBL_ENT (5)

Prunus sp @ BBSL__JPS (1)

Prunus virginiana @ BBSL__JPS (2)
Rykken, j.  1281 @ JRYA__NOCA (1)

1322 @ JRYA__NOCA (1)

1361 @ JRYA__OLYM (1)

145 @ JRYA__NOCA (3)

1535 @ JRYA__OLYM (1)

1745 @ JRYA__NOCA (4)

1793 @ JRYA__NOCA (4)

1821 @ JRYA__NOCA (10)

1857 @ JRYA__NOCA (2)

1871 @ JRYA__NOCA (3)

1927 @ JRYA__NOCA (1)

1934 @ JRYA__OLYM (1)

476 @ JRYA__NOCA (2)

505 @ JRYA__NOCA (1)

725 @ JRYA__NOCA (1)
Salicaceae  Salix @ AMNH_BEE (4)
Scrophulariaceae  Penstemon attenuatus @ BBSL (2)

Penstemon heterodoxus @ BBSL__JPS (5)

Penstemon newberryi @ BBSL__JPS (3)

Penstemon procerus @ BBSL__JPS (2)

Penstemon rydbergii @ BBSL__JPS (1)

Penstemon sp @ BBSL__JPS (1)
_  Withheld @ BBSL (5)

Associates · map
FamilyScientific name @ source (records)
Brassicaceae  Erysimum menziesii @ I_GBP (1)

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Updated: 2024-07-15 18:51:34 gmt
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