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Construction on the Rockford Airport cargo expansion has come right to the edge of Bell Bowl Prairie. (Courtesy of Cassi Saari)

Supporters of the movement to save Bell Bowl Prairie, a small patch of rare remnant prairie situated within the boundaries of Chicago Rockford International Airport, say they have a simple solution that preserves the prairie and allows the airport to expand: Just move a road.

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Bell Bowl Prairie, a high-quality remnant of Illinois prairie, located within the boundary of Chicago Rockford International Airport. (Courtesy of Cassi Saari)

Conservationists are in a race against the clock to save a five-acre patch of rare Illinois prairie from being bulldozed as part of a 280-acre expansion of the Chicago Rockford International Airport's cargo operation.

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The rusty patched bumble bee, pictured here, was the first bee in the continental U.S. to receive an endangered species listing. More bumble bees are now being considered. (Courtesy U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service)

One of North America’s most common native bumble bee species, the aptly named American bumble bee, is on the ropes. Among the threats to its survival: competition from honey bees.

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The endangered rusty patched bumble bee. (Courtesy U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service)

Four years after the rusty patched bumble bee was placed on the endangered species list, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has released its final recovery plan for the insect, a plan critics say manages to go too far and yet not far enough at the same time.

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Karen and Jim Belli say the secret ot their honey is the diversity of the local trees and plants in northeastern Illinois, making it in their view one of the best places to raise honeybees in the entire country. (WTTW News)

Illinois is known for growing corn and soybeans, but there’s another local crop some say is ready for its close up: honey. We visit a bee farm just north of Chicago that has become one of the most celebrated in the entire state.  

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White clover lawns are a buffet for pollinators, especially bees. (zoosnow / Pixabay)

Clover was once commonly included in lawn seed mixes, but then gained a reputation as a weed. It’s time, horticulturalists say, to revisit clover’s environmental benefits.

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(Patty Wetli / WTTW News)

From a sociological perspective, we rake because no one wants to be the neighbor with the messy lawn, but ecologically speaking, the benefits of a little mess outweigh the merits of a pristine yard.

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In this Aug. 7, 2019, file photo, the queen bee (marked in green) and worker bees move around a hive at the Veterans Affairs in Manchester, N.H. (AP Photo / Elise Amendola, File)

American honeybee colonies have bounced back after a bad year, the annual beekeeping survey finds.

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The bumble bee is one of hundreds of species of bees native to Illinois. (Judy Gallagher / Flickr)

The United Nations created World Bee Day to raise awareness of these pollinators and the threats they face. The honey bee may get all the glory, but there are 400-500 species of bees native to Illinois. 

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In this Dec. 30, 2019, photo provided by the Washington State Department of Agriculture, a dead Asian giant hornet is photographed in a lab in Olympia, Wash. (Quinlyn Baine / Washington State Department of Agriculture via AP)

The world’s largest hornet, a 2-inch killer dubbed the “Murder Hornet” with an appetite for honey bees, has been found in Washington state, where entomologists were making plans to wipe it out.

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It’s a job as old as time, but one Chicagoan is beekeeping in her own unique way. Meet graphic designer-turned-beekeeper Jana Kinsman.

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A rusty-patched bumble bee (U.S Fish and Wildlife Service / Wikimedia Commons)

It’s been a rough few decades for the rusty patched bumblebee. Once widespread in Illinois and throughout much of the U.S., the species has lost nearly 90% of its population over the past 20 years.

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A bumblebee lands on a flower. (Courtesy Chicago Botanic Garden)

Pollinating animals account for an estimated one out of every three bites of food humans eat. “Bees & Beyond” explains how the process works, traces its evolutionary history and demonstrates its impact on our daily lives.

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Beekeeper Thad Smith holds a frame of Italian honeybees in Cook County Jail’s parking log. Smith is a former jail detainee who founded the company West Side Bee Boyz after taking part in a job-training program. (Evan Garcia / WTTW)

Behind barbed wire fences, Cook County Jail inmates grow vegetables, flowers, herbs, and – as of May – they’re harvesting honey from two beehives provided by a former inmate.

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Northwestern's Paul CaraDonna studied the impact of increased temperatures on mason bees. (Jack Dykinga / Northwestern University)

Slight increases in temperature could lead to the extinction of bees in southwestern states in the near future, according to a new study from Northwestern University and the Chicago Botanic Garden.

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Dan Parizek is a “Honeybee Rescuer." If you’ve got a beehive in the walls of your home, Dan will relocate it so it won’t be destroyed by an exterminator. With Colony Collapse Disorder destroying some 10 million beehives since 2007, Dan and others say we can’t afford to lose any more hives. Jay Shefsky has a profile. Read an article, watch a web extra video, and learn more about Colony Collapse Disorder from local scientists.