I wanted to write about this when it appeared a few weeks ago, but I thought it would be better to wait for a bee expert to comment. Now, one has. Here’s the video for those who haven’t seen it.
Dave Goulson, Professor of Biology (Evolution, Behaviour and Environment) at University of Sussex writes:
Bumblebees are among the intellectual giants of the insect world. They learn the locations of landmarks relative to their nest, and are able to navigate accurately many miles across the landscape. … But action heroes, they are not. A recent video shows what the photographer believes to be a bumblebee diving in to rescue a fellow bee caught in a web, stinging the attacking spider in the process. This is unintentionally misleading, and not what it seems.
No, that wasn’t a stinger you saw, even though you want it to be. Or as Goulson concluded:
This is just two clumsy bees trying to find their way home.