VOICES Voices Icon Ideas and Insight From Explorers


Bumble Bees Pick the Most Nutritional Pollen, Research Suggests

The Center for Pollinator Research at Penn State has found that bumble bees target pollen with the highest nutritional value, information that can help identify plant species and stocks that best provide for the needs of bumble bees and potentially other bee species, which will help in the development of pollinator-friendly gardens and planting strips.

What is the Value of a Species?

TAKE ACTION to save the Rusty-patched Bumble Bee: chn.ge/28QVIZn

Everyone has heard about bee declines, but with so much attention focused on domesticated honeybees, someone has to speak up for the 4,000 species of native bees in North America. Natural history photographer Clay Bolt is on a multi-year quest to tell the stories of our native bees, and one elusive species – the Rusty-patched Bumble Bee – has become his ‘white whale.’

Traveling from state to state in search of the Rusty-patched, he meets the scientists and conservationists working tirelessly to preserve it. Clay’s journey finally brings him to Wisconsin, where he comes face to face with his fuzzy quarry and discovers an answer to the question that has been nagging him all along: why save a species?

A film by Day’s Edge Productions, produced in partnership with the Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation and Endangered Species Chocolate. With music by Dan Warren, New West Studios, and Cloud Cult.

Meet the Bee Expert who Helped Invent the BioBlitz

Sam Droege is known for his stunning close-up photography of bees, published in National Geographic (magazine and online), and featured also in the video on this post. He’ll be participating in the National Parks BioBlitz in Washington, D.C. this weekend, looking for bees, of course. Droege is also the head of the bee inventory and monitoring…

Over 4,000 Reasons to Love (and Protect) North America’s Native Bees

This is part one of a year-long series of articles by iLCP Fellow, Clay Bolt, focused on documenting the lives and highlighting the importance of preserving native North American bumble bees. There are over 4,000 known species of native North American bees whose pollination services are worth an estimated $3 billion dollars per year to the US economy. Beyond this impressive dollar amount, many agricultural plants are primarily pollinated by native bees that are uniquely equipped with the tools and techniques required to do the job. While we’re (justifiably) spending heaps of time focusing on the loss of honey bees here in North America, our native bees are in decline as well, but in general, the media has overlooked this important fact.

Bees Pollinating Cucumbers in Kenya!

Hello – greetings from Turkana in Northern Kenya… I am up here at the Turkana Basin Institute and spent some time watching bees pollinating the cucumbers being cultivated at the institute today. Cucumbers are one of my favourite salad items and make a refreshing snack up here in the desert at lunchtime. Cucumbers are yet…

Insect Pollination is a $215-billion Service to the World, Scientists Determine

Illustration by S.S. Firmage/NGS Bees, butterflies and other little critters that spend their lives buzzing around flowers provided worldwide economic value of about $215 billion in 2005, French and German scientists announced today. “This figure amounted to 9.5% of the total value of the world agricultural food production,” they said in a paper published in…