Non-native leafcutter bees found in Chicago

Image of non-native leafcutter bee.

(Spartan Newsroom) Thirty of the non-native leafcutter bees were found in a heavily urbanized part of Chicago. How they got to Chicago is uncertain, however. Their presence was previously confirmed in Michigan, Ohio and Pennsylvania. “Although we do not know the extent of the impact of nonnative bee species, there is evidence they may compete strongly with native bees for nesting resources.”

Entomologists eradicate first Asian giant hornet nest

Image of entomologist in hazard suit showing container of hornets.

(Washington State Department of Agriculture) WSDA entomologists successfully eradicated an Asian giant hornet nest by vacuuming the hornets out of the nest on Oct. 24, just two days after finding the nest in a tree on private property in Blaine, Wash. In all, the entomologists with WSDA’s Pest Program removed 98 worker hornets. During the early morning extraction, 85 hornets were vacuumed out of the nest and another 13 live hornets were collected with a net while observing the nest.

Genome sequencing shows climate barrier to spread of Africanized bees

Image of honey bees on frame.

(ScienceDaily, University of California, Davis) Since the 1950s, ‘Africanized’ honeybees have spread north and south across the Americas until apparently coming to a halt in California and northern Argentina. Now genome sequencing of hundreds of bees from the northern and southern limits shows a gradual decline in African ancestry across hundreds of miles, rather than an abrupt shift.

Bark beetle outbreaks benefit wild bee populations, habitat

Image of spruce forest damaged by bark beetles.

(Colorado State University) When southern Rocky Mountain forests are viewed from a distance these days, it may not look like much is left. Large swaths of dead, standing Engelmann spruce trees tell the tale of a severe regional spruce beetle epidemic in its waning stages. But new research suggests that spruce beetle outbreaks may help create habitat for pollinator communities in wilderness settings. The research team found significant increases in floral abundance and wild bee diversity in outbreak-affected forests, compared to similar, undisturbed forest.