US lists a bee as endangered for the first time

2017-01-12 13:25
A bumblebee on its way to a sunflower. (File, Yuri Kadobnov, AFP)

A bumblebee on its way to a sunflower. (File, Yuri Kadobnov, AFP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Miami - The United States placed a bee on the endangered species list for the first time, after the rusty patched bumblebee's population declined sharply due to pesticides, disease and climate change, officials said on Wednesday.

These once-common bumblebees are now "balancing precariously on the brink of extinction," said a statement from the US Fish and Wildlife Service.

"Abundance of the rusty-patched bumble bee has plummeted by 87%, leaving small, scattered populations in 13 states and one province," down from 28 states in the 1990s.

The final rule listing the rusty patched bumble bee as endangered appeared in the January 11 edition of the Federal Register and takes effect on February 10.

Experts say the bees are important because they pollinate economically important crops such as tomatoes, cranberries and peppers across the central and northern United States, as well as parts of Canada.

Their decline is likely due to a combination of factors: loss of habitat, disease and parasites, use of pesticides, climate change and extremely small population size.

Their endangered status signifies that they "are in danger of becoming extinct throughout all or a portion of their range," said a statement from FWS.

"Our top priority is to act quickly to prevent the extinction of the rusty patched bumble bee," said FWS Midwest Regional Director Tom Melius.

"Listing the bee as endangered will help us mobilise partners and focus resources on finding ways right now to stop the decline."

Read more on:    us  |  bees  |  global warming  |  conservation

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Inside News24

 
/News

Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
Traffic
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.