Intended Audience

This training is provided for anyone who has a curiosity for bumble bees and flowers, and an interest in contributing to an important community science project to provide a better understanding of the status of native bumble bees in Nebraska.

This is a free online training.

Participants are asked to use the knowledge and skills provided by the training to participate in the Nebraska Bumble Bee Atlas.


Saturday, May 01, 2021 
11:00 AM to 3:00 PM CT (Central Time)

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This is an online event.

Registration Contact

Karina Contreras, The Xerces Society
(503) 232-6639, Ext. 123

Day-of Contact/Instructor

Katie Lamke, The Xerces Society

Reasonable Accommodations

The Xerces Society is an equal-opportunity provider and employer, and provides reasonable accommodations for in-person events.

This webinar will be recorded and uploaded to our YouTube channel for viewing. There may be closed captioning available on the recordings.

Zoom offers some accessibility features for attendees as well. Visit the following Zoom links for 

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More Accessiblity Features


Special thanks to the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and The Nebraska Environmental Trust for their enormous support.

About the Xerces Society

The Xerces Society is a nonprofit organization that protects wildlife through the conservation of invertebrates and their habitat. Established in 1971, the Society is a trusted source for science-based information and advice. We collaborate with people and institutions at all levels and our work to protect pollinators encompasses all landscapes. Our team draws together experts from the fields of habitat restoration, entomology, botany, and conservation biology with a single focus—protecting the life that sustains us. To learn more about our work, visit

Photo Credit

Banner: Jennifer Hopwood/Xerces Society

Side bar photo: Katie Lamke/Xerces Society


Online Workshop: Bumble Bee Conservation,   Identification, and How to Participate in the Atlas

Saturday, May 01, 2021
11:00 AM - 3:00 PM CT (Central Time)

Please join us in a collaborative effort to track and conserve Nebraska's native bumble bees through this virtual training!

The Nebraska Bumble Bee Atlas is a statewide community science project aimed at tracking and conserving our native bumble bees. Join us in this workshop to learn about bumble bee biology, their conservation status, how to identify the 20 species found in Nebraska, and how to participate in the Atlas. This workshop will equip you with the skills needed to conduct an Atlas survey, including how to net and photograph bumble bees, and how to submit your findings to the project. The Atlas is a catch-and-release project so no bumble bees are harmed during the surveys. 

Anyone with an interest in supporting pollinators is encouraged to join - No experience is necessary to participate in the Atlas.



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Prior to this event, please visit the Nebraska Bumble Bee Atlas website to view the Training Packet. These materials will referenced in the online workshop and are available here:


This online webinar will cover the following topics:

  • Bumble Bee Biology
  • Bumble Bee Conservation
  • Identifying Nebraska's Bumble Bees
  • How to Participate in the Atlas
  • How to Net and Photograph Bumble Bees
  • How to Submit Your Findings

In recent years, the story of vanishing bees has become a common theme in news reports and popular culture. In most cases, these reports have focused on the disappearance of honey bees, a non-native species introduced to North America from Europe. The larger, often underappreciated story is that while honey bees are a popular and important species, native wild bees are also suffering, and in some cases, their fates are far worse. This is particularly true of some of North America’s native bumble bees.

Nebraska is home to nearly 20 species of bumble bees that play an important role in sustaining the health of our environment by pollinating flowers in natural, urban and agricultural settings. However, many of them face an uncertain future, and Nebraska Game and Parks has identified four of the state’s bumble bees as Species of Greatest Conservation Need. With support from the Nebraska Environmental Trust, researchers at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and the Xerces Society teamed up to launch the Atlas project in 2019.

With your help, we can create an army of trained volunteers equipped with cameras and vials, and spread out across the state to survey for bumble bees. Your participation will allow us to quickly and efficiently collect high quality data, and contribute to the local, regional, and global understanding of bumble bee distributions.

This series will be delivered virtually as a way to recruit and train volunteers in response to the coronavirus as we practice safe physical distancing.* After attending this webinar series we hope you'll join forces with us for the upcoming survey season and do your part to help protect these vital pollinators. 

*We understand that the current situation with the coronavirus is constantly evolving and differs by community. We fully anticipate that we will be able to have a field season this year, but that situation could change quickly -- and differ by location. The most important consideration during this sensitive time is personal and community health. Please follow all relevant regulations and the advice of health care professionals when developing your survey plans for the Atlas. Don't hesitate to stay closer to home if that is the right thing for you and/or your community; the health of our volunteers is of paramount importance. Thank you!


Katie Lamke, Endangered Species Conservation Biologist, The Xerces Society 
Katie joined the Xerces Society in 2019 to work on bumble bee conservation initiatives. Based in the Midwest, her main role is to coordinate, educate, and engage people in community science projects—the Missouri Bumble Bee Atlas and the Nebraska Bumble Bee Atlas— that help track and conserve bumble bees. Katie earned a bachelor’s degree from Humboldt State University (Environmental Biology) and a master's degree from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln (Entomology), where she focused on wild bee diversity and their floral associations within Tallgrass prairies. Katie has both a skillset and passion for identifying wild bees that has been professionally developed for species in the Northern Plains. She is enthusiastic about pollinator ecology and is committed to raising awareness about the conservation of wild bees.



The Nebraska Bumble Bee Atlas is a collaborative effort between the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and the Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation, supported with funding from the Nebraska Environmental Trust.