For the second consecutive year, BeeSpotter Johanna James-Heinz has Spotted the rusty-patched bumble bee, Bombus affinis, at the same Peoria County, IL site where she recorded this species in 2008 (our article on that Spotting can be read here).
This year, Ms. James-Heinz submitted photos of B. affinis on 11 August. Then, only two days later, she photographed B. affinis at a second locality near Peoria! Evidently, one or more tenacious populations of this bee have managed to survive the ravages of multiple forces that have driven the rusty-patch nearly to extinction in Illinois during the past 20 years.
The efforts of Ms. James-Heinz go to show that surprising results can ensue as a result of documentation of our biotic communities by interested citizen scientists.