The endangered listing for the rusty patched bumblebee is finally given wings

Mar 23, 2017

By Darryl Fears

The rusty patched bumblebee’s path to the endangered list was as up and down as the way it flies.

After a years-long run-up to a determination early this year that it was eligible for the list, and a month-long delay for a newly required review by the Trump administration, the rusty patched on Tuesday became the first bumblebee — and the first bee overall in the continental United States — to be listed under the Endangered Species Act.

As a result, the Natural Resources Defense Council said it could pull a lawsuit filed last month to challenge the delay. That suit could be replaced by another from a coalition of oil, housing developers, farm and energy lobbies that petitioned the Interior Department for a year-long delay in implementing the bee’s status.

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