The Living Force
Source (Dutch only): Waddenviltbij blijkt toch niet uitgestorven in Nederland
NOS News - Domestic - today, 13:18
Mudflat bee does not appear to be extinct in the Netherlands after all
The mudflat bee - Image Menno Reemer (EIS)
After thirty years, a bee that biologists thought was extinct in the Netherlands has resurfaced. Researchers from the Dutch Forestry Commission and insect knowledge center EIS found the mudflat bee again on Texel.
The habitat of this species is divided between mountainous areas in Central Europe and dune areas along the North Sea and Baltic Sea. Because very few habitats of the bee are known, "the Dutch population is therefore of great international importance," the discoverers state on Nature Today (in Dutch).
The bee species is vulnerable because it does not build its own nest but lays its eggs as a 'cuckoo bee' in the nest of another species. The fact that the mudflat bee chooses the nest of the equally rare ice-silk bee makes the species extra vulnerable.
The species was last observed in 1991, also on Texel. Since no more specimens were found on Texel or in the Zwanenwater habitat near Callantsoog, the species was added to the Red List of threatened species as 'disappeared from the Netherlands'.
Because it is a small insect, the researchers hope that there may also be specimens living on other Wadden Islands which have been overlooked until now. "For now, however, the population on Texel is the only one we know of, so it is important to be very protective of it."
To prevent the creature from disappearing from our country again, the province of North Holland plans to conduct research on this and other endangered bee species on Texel, such as the ice-silk bee. "If we know better what these bees need, then it may be possible to prevent further decline and preserve both species in the Netherlands."
Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator (free version)