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Biodiversity & Bees

May 22, 2017 is International Day for Biological Diversity and IPBES has been concerned that “many wild bees and butterflies have been declining in abundance, occurrence and diversity at local and regional scales in North-West Europe and North America.”

A study by University of Vermont found that “between 2008 and 2013, bee abundance declined across 23% of US land area. This decline was generally associated with conversion of natural habitats to row crops.” They identified 139 counties (see map above) where low bee abundances correspond to large areas of pollinator-dependent crops. These areas of mismatch between supply (wild bee abundance) and demand (cultivated area) for pollination comprise 39% of the pollinator-dependent crop area in the United States.

There are 4,000 native bee species in North America. They support natural ecosystems by keeping a healthy diversity among pollinators. But even they are facing threats. Yes Magazine suggests planting Rubber Rabbit Brush to help support native western bumble bees.

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