Pollinators

 

A carpenter bee hovers by a bright red ocotillo cactus flowerA small native sweat bee on a Mariposa lily.A honey bee pollinating a yellow flowerGreen, black, and white striped monarch caterpillarA Queen butterfly alights on a purple thistle flowerA Common Buckeye Butterfly has brown wings decorated with orange lines, tan patches, and black dots

Why care about pollinators?  Pollinators are responsible for reproduction of over 2/3 of our food and fiber crops!  Pollinators include native bees, other insects like flies and beetles, butterflies, bats, and hummingbirds.  Over 80% of flowering plants need pollinators to set seeds. These seeds, and the plants that grow from them, feed many creatures, from birds to elk to humans. Pollinators are at risk because of habitat loss, disease, and pesticide use. 

Imagine walking in nature without flowers or the songs of birds to delight the senses; this would be our forests and grasslands, neighborhoods and parks without pollinators. You have an opportunity to help our pollinator friends. Turn your backyard or public spaces into pollinator habitat, become familiar with the issue and the policies that support pollinators.  Check out the resources below to find out more!

 

Want to Learn More?

Find more information about pollinators at the following websites:

  • US Forest Service Washington Office Detailed description of pollination and pollinators.
  • Whitehouse blog: Announcing new steps to promote pollinator health.
  • Bee Basics is a publication that was put together by a partnership between the USDA Forest Service and an organization called the Pollinator Partnership.  Check it out for a nicely illustrated, in-depth look at bees that is informative, yet simple to read and understand. 
  • National Park Service curriculum about pollinators includes tons of resources.
  • Xerxes Society Bring Back the Pollinators Campaign also includes numerous resources.
  • The Pesticide Issue, Xerxes Society lays out the science explaining how pesticides impact pollinators.
  • The Monarch Issue, Xerxes Society focus on our shrinking monarch population.  Check out the graphs!
  • Clearinghouse for the latest press on pollinators (Make Way for Monarchs, a Milkweed-Butterfly Recovery Alliance)
  • National Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) technical reports for Enhancing Pollinator Habitat in Arizona, on rangelands, and in gardens.
  • When they think of pollinators, most folks don’t think of mammals--particularly flying mammals. Arizona's state flower, the saguaro cactus bloom, depends on native bats for pollination.  Visit Bat Pollination to learn more.
  • US Fish & Wildlife Service About Pollinators