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Bring Back the Pollinators

Responding to a petition from the Xerces Society and Dr. Robbin Thorp, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will list Franklin’s bumble bee, as an endangered species under the Endangered Species Act (ESA), making it the first bee in the western continental U.S. to be officially recognized under the ESA.
A project to better understand the status of Missouri’s bumble bees is being launched this month thanks to a new conservation partnership. The Missouri Bumble Bee Atlas will combine the efforts of the Missouri Department of Conservation; the University of Missouri College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources; two nonprofit organizations, Quail and Pheasants Forever and the Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation; and volunteers spread throughout the state.
An extensive review of bumble bee studies and surveys from across the U.S. show that three formerly common bumble bee species are experiencing steep declines. The report compiled information from more than three dozen scientists and citizen monitors and found that populations of the rusty-patched, yellowbanded and western bumble bee have all sharply dropped in the last decade.