Third Graders Champion Endangered Beetle


April 30, 2015

Does the state in which you live have a designated insect? Forty-six states do, however Rhode Island is not one of them, reports WPRI. Fortunately, some third grade students in the state decided to fix that by choosing an insect and launching a campaign for its acceptance. Now, legislation is pending to make the American burying beetle (Nicrophorus americanus) Rhode Island’s official state insect. Why the American burying beetle and not a honeybee or ladybug? The kids choose the endangered bug, which is found on Block Island in the east and only a few states to the west, after a Roger Williams Park Zoo conservationist informed them of the Zoo’s efforts to raise thousands of them and let them loose to thrive and repopulate. The students’ teachers say the idea was to give the students a civics lesson, however they never imagined the kids would be instrumental in passing a bill. “The effort is being championed by lawmakers from Newport, who were contacted by the students, and from Block Island, where the American burying beetle lives,” according to WPRI. Click here to read more.






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