What was once thought to be impossible has come to pass; a bumblebee species was placed on the endangered species list first. However, it is unlikely it will be the last.
Twenty years ago, the rusty patched bumblebee was as common as flies, with Midwesterners having to shoe them away. Now, not even trained bee watchers can find them.
Certain protections were put into place with its addition to the endangered species list, including regulations to protect its habitat, raise awareness, and institute a recovery plan to restore the population.
While it was the first added, there are questions about why it was the one selected over others. This was due to its former commonality and then rapid decline.
The reason determined for this decline was farm pesticides, household herbicides, climate change, and human development in the bee’s habitat.
The same story is unfolding for the American bumblebee. A petition was recently started for listing it as an endangered species, so protections can be put into place to protect its habitat and prevent it from being killed.
Many of the same threats that the rusty patched bumblebee faced, the American bumblebee are also dealing with, causing their numbers to dwindle.
10 /10 Decline Of The American Bumblebee
Throughout the United States, the bumblebee number has declined by over 89% in the past 20 years.
According to the Center for Biological Diversity, the American bumblebee has also entirely vanished from eight states in the US, including Idaho, Maine, North Dakota, New Hampshire, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Wyoming.
9 /10 Bees On The Endangered Species List?
After completing its initial review of a petition that requested the endangered listing for the bumblebee, the US Fish and Wildlife Service announced it had enough credible info to suggest a listing could be justified.
The petition was filed by the Center for Biological Diversity and has now moved on to the next step of the endangered species process.
The petition outlined various threats, including disease, habitat destruction, pesticide use, climate change, and competition of non-native bee species.