Tags: bumble bee | endangered | rusty patch | species

Bumble Bee Endangered: 'Rusty Patch' Species in Steep Decline

Image: Bumble Bee Endangered: 'Rusty Patch' Species in Steep Decline

(Dreamstime.com)

By    |   Thursday, 22 Sep 2016 09:36 AM

A bumble bee is buzzing toward the endangered list after the U.S. Fish and Wildfire Service proposed protecting the "rusty patched" species which was once widely found in the upper Midwest and Northeastern United States.

The rusty patch bumble bee is just one of many wild bee species that has experienced a decline over the last two decades, said Reuters, and this particular bee is the first in the continental United States to be proposed for a listing under the U.S. Endangered Species Act.

Also known as Bombus affinis, the species got its name for the reddish blotch located on its abdomen. The Xerces Society, which petitioned the FWS to list the wild bee in 2013, said the bee “is not only an important pollinator of prairie wildflowers, but also of cranberries, blueberries, apples, alfalfa, and numerous other crops,” Agri Pulse noted.

According to the FWS, the rusty patch bee has seen a 90 percent decline in its abundance since the late 1990s, likely the result of disease, pesticides, climate change, and habitat loss.

“The pesticides with greatest effects on bumble bees are insecticides and herbicides,” FWS said. “Insecticides are specifically designed to directly kill insects, including bumble bees, and herbicides reduce available floral resources, thus indirectly affecting bumble bees.”

The FWS added that “although the overall toxicity of pesticides to rusty patched or other bumble bees is unknown, pesticides have been documented to have both lethal and sublethal effects (for example, reduced or no male production, reduced or no egg hatch, and reduced queen production and longevity) on bumble bees.”

Unlike honey bees, keeping track of drops in population among wild bees is a more difficult task.

“Endangered Species Act safeguards are now the only way the bumble bee would have a fighting chance for survival,” said Sarina Jepsen of the Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation and one of those who petitioned the government for protection of the wild bee in question.

The public comment period, which was brought on by the proposed listing on Wednesday will go until Nov. 21, Reuters noted. After that date, the agency has the option of revising the proposal or finalizing a decision.

© 2017 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

   
1Like our page
2Share
TheWire
A bumble bee is buzzing toward the endangered list after the U.S. Fish and Wildfire Service proposed protecting the "rusty patched" species which was once widely found in the upper Midwest and Northeastern United States.
bumble bee, endangered, rusty patch, species
361
2016-36-22
Thursday, 22 Sep 2016 09:36 AM
Newsmax Inc.
 

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
© Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved