Xerces’ Newest Community Science Project: Nebraska Bumble Bee Atlas

Image of bumble bee on flower.

(Xerces Society) To help further our understanding of, and conservation efforts for, bumble bees, The Xerces Society has launched the Nebraska Bumble Bee Atlas. This community science project offers locals the opportunity to work alongside researchers to collect data that will shed light on the distribution, status, and habitat needs of Nebraska’s bumble bees.

California Fish and Game Commission adds four bumble bees to candidate list

Image of bumble bee on pink flower.

(JD Supra/Nossaman LLP) The Commission voted 3-1 that listing four subspecies of bumble bee may be warranted under the California Endangered Species Act (CESA).​ The decision was made after the Xerces Society, Center for Food Safety, and Defenders of Wildlife filed a petition to list the Crotch bumble bee, Franklin’s bumble bee, Suckley cuckoo bumble bee, and western bumble bee as endangered species.

Dr. Robbin Thorp: 1933-2019

Image of Robbin Thorp.

(UC ANR) Dr. Robbin Thorp, a global and legendary authority on bees and a distinguished emeritus professor of entomology at the University of California, Davis, passed away Friday, June 7 at his home in Davis, surrounded by family. He was 85. A tireless advocate of pollinator species protection and conservation, Dr. Thorp was known for his expertise, dedication and passion in protecting native pollinators, especially bumble bees, and for his teaching, research and public service.

As bumble bee diets narrow, ours could too

Image of bumble bee on flower.

(UC Riverside) “Our study is the first to look at diet during this stage where queen bumbles are trying to start a nest, and to show that the diets they have access to impact how quickly they can transition to having helpers.” And without a variety of pollens available, the queens are constrained to fewer options, some of which appear to be bad for them.

Pesticide exposure causes bumble bee flight to fall short

Image of bee attached to the arm of a flight mill by magnet.

(Imperial College London) Realistic exposures caused bumble bee to fly significantly shorter distances and for less time, reducing the area in which colonies can forage for food by up to 80 percent. Intriguingly, exposed bees seemed to enter a hyperactive-like state in which they initially flew faster than unexposed bees and therefore may have “worn themselves out”.