Wild bee decline has been reported worldwide. Some bumblebee species (Bombus spp.) have declined in Europe and North America, and their ranges have shrunk due to climate and land cover changes. In countries with limited historical and current occurrence data, it is often difficult to investigate bumblebee range shifts. Here we estimated the past/present distributions of six major bumblebee species in Japan with species distribution modeling using current occurrence data and past/present climate and land cover data. The differences identified between estimated past and present distributions indicate possible range shifts. The estimated ranges of B. diversus, B. hypocrita, B. ignitus, B. honshuensis, and B. beaticola shrank over the past 26 years, but that of B. ardens expanded. The lower altitudinal limits of the estimated ranges became higher as temperature increased. When focusing on the effects of land cover change, the estimated range of B. diversus slightly shrank due to an increase in forest area. Such increase in forest area may result from the abandonment of agricultural lands and the extension of the rotation time of planted coniferous forests and secondary forests. Managing old planted coniferous forests and secondary forests will be key to bumblebee conservation for adaptation to climate change.
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