A bumblebee gathers nectar on a wildflower in Appleton, Maine.
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Many species of bees, butterflies and other creatures that are vital to agricultural pollination are threatened with extinction, posing risks to major world crops and global biodiversity, a U.N. body said Friday.Among its findings, it said animal pollination accounts for 5 and 8 percent of global agricultural production by volume, amounting to between $235 billion and $577 billion worth of annual output.In Europe, 9 percent of bee and butterfly species are threatened with extinction and populations are declining for 37 percent of bee species and 31 percent of butterfly species for which sufficient data is available, the IPBES said.Data is more solid for non-insect pollinators such as bats and birds, however, with the IPBES saying 16 percent of such species worldwide are threatened with extinction.
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