Project Bumble Bee: Conserving Wild Pollinators in California

In 2015, the Hind Foundation granted $50,000 to the Xerces Society to help fund Project Bumble Bee: Conserving Wild Pollinators in California. The project’s goal is to protect the most vulnerable bumble bee species in California and help conserve habitat for all bumble bees so that additional species do not become endangered. A preliminary analyses by the Xerces Society revealed that six bumble bees (nearly one quarter of California’s native bumble bee fauna) are Endangered or Critically Endangered. In order to conserve at risk bumble bees, Xerces needs to better understand the current distribution of species that have dramatically declined. In early 2013, a pilot citizen monitoring project was initiated to document the current location of bumble bees, including many highly imperiled species. With support from the Hind Foundation’s grant, Xerces is launching the project on a large scale by creating a user-friendly citizen monitoring web portal. The plan is to reach thousands of naturalists, gardeners, teachers, biologists, and wildlife enthusiasts within California to engage them in wildlife conservation and collect information that is vital to preserving the state’s bumble bee fauna.

Noteworthy Outcomes

  • Saving A Significant Food Source
    Pollinators are critical components of our environment and essential to our food security, providing pollination to more than 85 percent of flowering plants and contributing to one in three bites of the food that we eat.
  • Engaging Community
    Engaging concerned citizens in Bumble Bee conservation efforts will increase awareness of the decline in wild Bumble Bee populations and put more hands to work on the project.