Inside Region 3
Midwest Region
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Service staff Tamara Smith and Pete Fasbender (far right) take a selfie with members of the Chuncheon Munhwa Broadcasting Corporation, including Director Jae-Gyu Lee (front left). Photo by Pete Fasbender/USFWS

Service staff Tamara Smith and Pete Fasbender (far right) take a selfie with members of the Chuncheon Munhwa Broadcasting Corporation, including Director Jae-Gyu Lee (front left). Photo by Pete Fasbender/USFWS.

South Korean documentarians learn from
Ecological Service staff – it’s the bee’s knees!

A documentary film crew from Chuncheon Munhwa Broadcasting Corporation, one of the leading South Korean television and radio network companies, were in the United States for only a few days, but traveled from coast to coast to interview key subjects for their documentary about bees. They chose to visit the Minnesota-Wisconsin Ecological Services Field Office because of their role in the evaluating the rusty patched bumble bee for federal listing and their role as the lead office for coordinating the national recovery of the federally endangered bee.

The crew interviewed the Minnesota-Wisconsin Ecological Services Field Office staff about pollinator conservation, with a particular focus on endangered bees. Producers of the documentary hope to engage and encourage pollinator conservation in South Korea, in part, by examining the Service’s efforts to protect and recover the federally endangered rusty patched bumble bee and how similar efforts might help bees native to South Korea. The film crew learned about what it takes to list a species under the Endangered Species Act and the first bees listed under the act (seven yellow faced bees in Hawaii and the rusty patched bumble bee). Service staff, in turn, learned about some of the ecological challenges that folks in South Korea are facing. The documentary will aim to inspire interest and conservation in the declining bees of South Korea, such as the Eastern honey bee (Apis cerana), a species of bee native to southern and southeastern Asia.

In addition to visiting Minnesota, the crew stopped to talk to contacts in Los Angeles and Washington, D.C. before heading back to South Korea to finish the film. We hope that the information that was gleaned from their conversations in the U.S. will help boost pollinator conservation in South Korea!

For more information about the rusty patched bumble bee and how you can help, visit our website.

By Tamara Smith
Minnesota-Wisconsin Ecological Services Field Office

Tamara Smith, MN WI Field Office, is interviewed on camera for a documentary film about endangered bees. Photo by Kelly Nail/USFWS

Tamara Smith, Minnesota - Wisconsin Field Office, is interviewed on camera for a documentary film about endangered bees. Photo by Kelly Nail/USFWS.

 

Last updated: February 2, 2018