In October 2018, the Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation, Defenders of Wildlife and the Center for Food Safety submitted a petition to the California Fish and Game Commission to formally list four species of bumble bees as endangered under the California Endangered Species Act. The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) is now seeking information relevant to the proposal to list the Crotch bumble bee, Franklin’s bumble bee, Western bumblebee and Suckley cuckoo bumble bee as endangered species.
The listing petition and CDFW’s petition evaluation described several threats to the survival of the four bumble bee species in California, including direct and indirect impacts associated with habitat loss and alteration, disease, pesticides, competition and small population sizes.
CDFW recommended and the Commission voted to advance the species to candidacy on June 12, 2019. The Commission published findings of this decision on June 28, triggering a 12-month period during which CDFW will conduct status reviews to inform the Commission’s ultimate decision whether to list the species.
As part of the status review process, CDFW is soliciting information from the public regarding the bumble bees’ ecology, genetics, life history, distribution, abundance, habitat, the degree and immediacy of threats to reproduction or survival, adequacy of existing management and recommendations for management of the species. Comments, data and other information can be submitted in writing to: California Department of Fish and Wildlife, Attn: David Wright, 1812 Ninth St., Sacramento, CA 95811
Comments may also be submitted by email to firstname.lastname@example.org. If submitting comments by email, include “Bumble Bees” in the subject heading.
All comments received by Aug. 16, 2019, will be evaluated prior to the submittal of CDFW’s final status review reports to the Commission. Once CDFW submits the final status review reports to the Commission, they will be placed on the agenda for discussion at the next available Commission meeting. Comments also will be made available to the public at that time.
Following receipt of CDFW’s status review reports, the Commission will allow a 30-day public comment period prior to taking any action on CDFW’s recommendations.
The listing petition and CDFW’s petition evaluation for the four species are available at https://fgc.ca.gov/CESA#bb.