While gardening earlier I spotted this bumblebee lying motionless in the grass. Finding a grounded bumblebee this time of year, just as the days are starting to get warmer, means it is probably a queen. Sometimes she may have been grounded because she has got caught in a sudden shower or a cold spell. If the temperature of the thorax falls below 30°C, the bumblebee isn’t able to take off.
I gently picked her up using a piece of card, and moved her somewhere warmer. I gave her a 30/70 mixture of honey and water on a plastic surface within her reach, taking care not to wet her hair or get her sticky.
Once she had warmed and fed she flew off.
In saving a queen I may well have saved an entire nest.