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Learn more about Colorado insects on this interactive map. Roll over or click on the insects to learn more and also view the Pollinator Study and the state bill that made it possible.

Insects, often underestimated, play a remarkable role in our state's landscapes. Not only are they cool, but they are also vital contributors to essential ecosystem services. From pollination to waste decomposition, insects support Colorado's diverse landscapes, from the mountains to the rivers. Join us as we delve into the world of this fascinating wildlife and learn about the new Native Pollinating Insects Study report! 

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Margined Calligrapher Syrphid Flies (Toxomerus marginatus) are widely distributed across North America, from Canada to Mexico. 

Rollover the insects above to learn about them

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The Colorado Hairstreak butterfly (Hypaurotis crysalus) became our official state insect in 1996, thanks to a campaign led by Colorado 4th graders!

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Tegeticula yuccasella, a species of Yucca Moth, shares an important mutualistic relationship with Soapweed Yucca.

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Bombus occidentalis, the Western Bumblebee, inhabits a wide array of environments in western North America—from lowland agricultural areas to high alpine meadows.

The Pueblo Digger Bee (Anthophora pueblo) is named in honor of the ancestral Pueblo peoples, who built cliff dwellings in the Four Corners region more than 700 years ago.

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The Blue Orchard Bee (Osmia lignaria) stands out with its eye-catching metallic blue-black color

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American Rubyspot damselflies (Hetaerina americana) add a splash of color to stream and river habitats across North America.

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Dufourea maura (Black Short-faced Bees) are specialists on one of Colorado’s most eye-catching wildflowers – the Harebell
(Campanula sp.)!

Agapostemon coloradinus (the Colorado Striped Sweat Bee) is a colorful creature named after a colorful state!

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Great Sand Dunes Tiger Beetles (Cicindela theatina), named for their distinctive coloring and predatory behaviors, are found only in Colorado's Great Sand Dunes National Park. 

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In response to CO Senate Bill 22-199, the CO Department of Natural Resources commissioned a study on native pollinating insects. This collaborative study was conducted by Colorado State University Extension, the Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation, and the University of Colorado Museum of Natural History in consultation with state and federal agencies, researchers, scientists, and land managers across the state.

The People & Pollinators Action Network (PPAN) championed the Study Bill at the legislature in 2022 and was tasked with supporting the development of a public education and outreach plan to complement the Study. These efforts stand outside the Study scope. However, since the Study focused on state-level programs, input on other insect pollinator programs and land management efforts at the regional, county, and local levels are valuable.

Overall, an educated community can engage in activities that support pollinator conservation efforts at different levels, from data collection and analysis to education, policy development, and funding mobilization. By leveraging the skills and knowledge of individuals across Colorado, we can make a meaningful contribution to the protection of pollinators and their ecosystems.

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