AR Bumble Bees

Working list of the Bumble Bees likely in Arkansas. We likely have about eight species in the state (red species). List obtained from internet sources and now frm Bumblebees of North America, Williams, Thorp, Richardson & Colla. Groups from that book listed for AR species. This list below does not include the Cuckoo bumblebees and we likely have five or six of those in the east as well. Arkansas will only have the cuckoo Bombus variabilis and it only parasitizes B. pensylvanicus.


Ranges are from now from B of NA maps. Of the 46 North American species there are likely 20 or so eastern species and only 7 occur in Florida as they tend to favor cooler climates with their excellent temperature regulation capabilities. Six of those are Cuckoo bumbles. Several species occur only in the high Arctic and Alaska, several are California only. Images of confirmed species on the internet are not common. Links for photos are available on all of these species. Note the workers, queens and males can have very different color profiles. These links are from the excellent Pickering site. (Note the second form of B. rufocinctus is linked to the descriptor).

Bombus affinis Cresson: NE from the Dakotas to ME and into the Appalachians

Bombus auricomus (Robertson)[Group III]: northern AR, east US from Dakotas and OK and eastward to the coast

Bombus bimaculatus Cresson[Group I]: NW AR, most of east but sparse into GA FL LA

Bombus borealis Kirby: northern tier and into central Canada, rare IL and Appalachian records

Bombus fervidus (Fabricius)[Group III]: just into North AR, most of US except the south, west TX, no FL records

Bombus fraternus (Smith): southeast except Appalachians, east to NM CO, north to SD OH

Bombus frigidus Smith: possibly MI and ME, mostly western otherwise

Bombus griseocollis (DeGeer)[Group II]:  previously most of US but rare and declining in the Northeast, may be less common in AR

Bombus impatiens Cresson[Group I]: Entire East, all of AR, barely into Canada, east TX, east OK

Bombus pensylvanicus (DeGeer)[Group III]: most of US except central western states

Bombus perplexus Cresson[Group I]: mainly NW US, may occur here, WI IL KY TN NC CT barely into north GA

Bombus rufocinctus Cresson: northern tier US and southern Canada and most of the west

Bombus sandersoni Franklin: Appalachian and over to MI and MN and the entire NE US

Bombus ternarius Say: northern tier in the US sweeping up into central Canada, not south of IN OH

Bombus terricola Kirby: Appalachian, southern IL and NE into central Canada

Bombus vagans Smith[Group I]: NE AR and across the NE US over to Montana and ID


Other Insects Main