The Native Bumble Bees in Your Own Backyard: Reflections of a Backyard Bee-chaser

Date(s) - Wed Sep 23, 2020
7:00 pm - 8:00 pm

Online Event

Other Event of Interest

Hosted by Chicago Living Corridors

Brandie Dunn’s bee chasing journey can be traced back to the early years in the life of her young family when they would spend a great deal of time outside together, and she found herself completely won over by the charismatic, humble charm of the visitors to the flowers.

Macrophotography opened a window further luring her into the enchanting world of bees. Seeing them in greater detail through that lens, she has been hooked ever since. This love affair with bumble bees and other native bees led to the formation of Midwest Native Bee Alliance where she lends her voice to call attention to the key role native bees play in our ecosystem and the many challenges they face. She strives to foster appreciation for the amazing diversity of native bees abuzz in our own backyards.

In addition to contributing citizen science data to,, and iNaturalist, she currently volunteers through McHenry County Conservation District, conducting photographic bumble bee surveys to help establish baseline data for populations present.

She has written an Outdoor Classroom Grant for her church and has helped with the planting and maintenance of the native plant garden, while also educating the children of the church about the native plants and the insect life they support.

For this webinar, Brandie will introduce you to a variety of charming bumble bee characters which includes the once common, but now endangered Rusty-patched bumble bee, who just might still be spotted in your very own backyard should you choose to invite them. Native plant selection, nesting & overwintering habitat, along with land management recommendations will be discussed. Finally, she will reflect on her own personal #backyardneighborchallenge she conducted during the 70 days of Illinois’ stay-at-home order and the unique insights gleaned from the daily practice of exploring the diversity of life in her neighborhood during an unsettling time in our world’s history.