Friday, 15 December 2017

New discovery, more bees mark Michigan's first, full bee census


Date:  December 7, 2017
Source:  Michigan State University
     
The first complete bee census, led by Michigan State University scientists, confirmed a new species and revealed that the actual number of bee species in Michigan exceeded earlier estimates.

Identifying potential pollinators, including the 38 new bees recorded in the state, is crucial, especially in the face of declining honey bee populations. All pollinators make an estimated $14 billion annual contribution to U.S. agriculture, so it's imperative to understand wild bee populations and their benefits to crops and the environment.

"Pollinator conservation is not possible without a good understanding of what bees we have and where they are found," said Jason Gibbs, former MSU graduate student now with University of Manitoba. "We need better and more thorough sampling of our wild bee communities and an increased emphasis on understanding their basic taxonomy and natural history."


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