This may be the most convincing Bumble bee mimic in Vermont. Here this bee is very similar in size and color to the Half-black Bumblebee, though in other parts of the country, the same species has a completely different color pattern to match the local bumblebee species. This species nests in large aggregations in clay banks and as a result this species is most often found near medium and large rivers.

Identification: Unlike Bumble Bees they have a protruding clypeus and lack the bare corbicula on the hind tibia (only on female, non-parasitic bumble bees). Males have yellow on their clypeus and surrounding face.

Similar Species: Workers of Half-Black Bumble Bees (Bombus vagans) are roughly the same color and size, though with experience the flight style and antenna placement of Digger Bees is distinctive. The other Digger Bee (Anthophora terminalis) in VT has less defined hair colors and an orange tip on the abdomen.

Global Status: Secure (G5)

Vermont Status: Vulnerable (S3)


For more information, visit the following links:

Discover Life
Living Atlas Species Page


Distribution: To see the global distribution, check out the iNaturalist account, and toggle the GBIF layer on the map.