Quantcast
Environmental News for a Healthier Planet and Life

Help Support EcoWatch

New Website Helps Identify Bumblebees and Protect Pollinators

A new website launched yesterday allows people to be directly involved in protecting bumblebees throughout North America. BumbleBeeWatch.org enables people to connect with experts and other enthusiasts, and help build a comprehensive picture of where bumblebees are thriving and where they need help.

Furry, hardworking bumblebees are essential to wildlands, gardens and farms, helping to deliver food security for both people and wildlife alike. Alarmingly, many recent reports suggest that we may be losing their familiar buzz from our summer landscapes due to habitat loss, insecticide use, disease and climate change. More information is needed to determine their conservation status, and that process demands a continent-wide collaborative effort.

“We have an amazing community of citizen scientists who have helped us follow a handful of bee species,” said Rich Hatfield, the Xerces Society conservation biologist who coordinated creation of Bumble Bee Watch. “Hopefully this new website will generate greater awareness and allow us to draw more people into this community.”

A smartphone or simple digital camera (and a computer) is all that’s needed to start exploring BumbleBeeWatch.org. In addition to uploading photos of bumblebees, individuals can identify the bumblebees, learn about their ecology and connect with bumblebee experts and other citizen scientists engaged in pollinator conservation.

The information gathered will help locate rare or endangered populations, as well as track species whose status is less well known. "Bumble Bee Watch will greatly benefit our at-risk pollinator conservation program," said Sheila Colla, project leader for Wildlife Preservation Canada’s At-Risk Pollinator Project, a partner in Bumble Bee Watch. “By locating rare bumble bee populations and collecting information on their ecological requirements, citizen scientists can help conserve these important insects.”

Bumble Bee Watch is a partnership between the Xerces Society, Wildlife Preservation Canada, the University of Ottawa, the Montreal Insectarium, the Natural History Museum in London and BeeSpotter.

“Bumble Bee Watch unites scientists and conservation organizations in Canada and the United States in the study and protection of North America’s bumblebees,” said Scott Black, executive director of the Xerces Society. “We are grateful for the hard work and commitment that our partners have made. This website will transform the way bumblebees are viewed and protected.”

Visit EcoWatch’s BIODIVERSITY page for more related news on this topic.

 

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

U.S. Vice President Joe Biden speaks during a White House Clean Energy Investment Summit on June 16, 2015 in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building in Washington, DC. Alex Wong / Getty Images

By Jake Johnson

With presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden's climate platform becoming increasingly ambitious thanks to nonstop grassroots pressure, fossil fuel executives and lobbyists are pouring money into the coffers of President Donald Trump's reelection campaign in the hopes of keeping an outspoken and dedicated ally of dirty energy in the White House.

Read More Show Less
The Food and Drug Administration is now warning against more than 100 potentially dangerous hand sanitizers.
Antonio_Diaz / Getty Images

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is now warning against more than 100 potentially dangerous hand sanitizers.

Read More Show Less
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo speaks at a news conference on July 1, 2020 in New York City. Byron Smith / Getty Images

While the nation overall struggles with rising COVID cases, New York State is seeing the opposite. After peaking in March and April and implementing strict shutdowns of businesses, the state has seen its number of positive cases steadily decline as it slowly reopens. From coast-to-coast, Governor Andrew Cuomo's response to the crisis has been hailed as an exemplar of how to handle a public health crisis.

Read More Show Less
A whale shark swims in the Egyptian Red Sea. Derek Keats / Wikimedia Commons / CC by 2.0

By Gavin Naylor

Sharks elicit outsized fear, even though the risk of a shark bite is infinitesimally small. As a marine biologist and director of the Florida Program for Shark Research, I oversee the International Shark Attack File – a global record of reported shark bites that has been maintained continuously since 1958.

Read More Show Less
A girl sits under a temporary shade made by joining two bed in Churu, Rajasthan on June 4, 2019. Temperatures in the Indian desert city hit 50 degrees C (122 F) for the second time in three days, sending residents scrambling for shade. MONEY SHARMA / AFP via Getty Images

Current efforts to curb an infectious disease show the potential we have for collective action. That action and more will be needed if we want to stem the coming wave of heat-related deaths that will surpass the number of people who die from all infectious diseases, according to a new study, as The Guardian reported.

Read More Show Less
America Pikas are found from the Sierra Nevada to the Rocky Mountains, and have been migrating to higher elevations. Jon LeVasseur / Flickr / Public Domain

By Jenny Morber

Caribbean corals sprout off Texas. Pacific salmon tour the Canadian Arctic. Peruvian lowland birds nest at higher elevations.

Read More Show Less

Trending

Biologists are studying the impact of climate change on the Nenets and their reindeer herds. Deutsche Welle

Biologist Egor Kirillin is on a special mission. Deep in the Siberian wilderness in the Russian Republic of Sakha, he waits on the Olenjok river until reindeer come thundering into the water.

Read More Show Less