Posted June 24, 2019 at 11:21 AM by Amanda Frentz
What exactly, you might ask, is pollination? Pollination is a vital stage in the life cycle of all flowering plants. When pollen is moved within a flower or carried from one flower to another of the same species it leads to fertilization. This transfer of pollen is necessary for healthy and productive native and agricultural ecosystems. About 75% of all flowering plant species need the help of animals to move their heavy pollen grains from plant to plant for fertilization. Most pollinators (about 200,000 species) are beneficial insects such as flies, beetles, wasps, ants, butterflies, moths, and bees. The work of pollinators ensures full harvests of crops and contributes to healthy plants everywhere. In the U.S., pollination produces nearly $20 billion worth of products annually.
Honeybees are the most beneficial and needed insect on our planet as they perform about 80 percent of all pollination worldwide. One bee colony can pollinate up to 300 million flowers a day, and 70 out of the top 100 food crops are pollinated by bees! As a result of their continuous hard work, we have healthier plants, food and of course - HONEY! Often honeybees live high in the hollowed-out cavities of trees minding their own business, but sometimes they build their hives in less than ideal spots that can be very dangerous such as your home or place of business. Here are the park we have been lucky enough to develop a partnership with Bee Guyz, a local business that will remove bees from unsafe areas and relocate them to areas of natural habitat.
Unfortunately the world is losing bee colonies at an alarming rate and deaths from Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD) since 2006 have brought much needed attention to the issue. Bees are dying from a variety of factors including pesticides, drought, habitat destruction, parasites/viruses/diseases, nutrition deficit, air pollution, global warming. We as humans largely contribute to two of the most prominent causes of bee death: pesticides and habitat loss.
What can you do to help protect our pollinators?
If you see a bee hive in the Park in an unsafe spot, or if the bees are being aggressive please contact our Safety Coordinator Carrie Ann Ducote at 504-483-9358. We will contact the Bee Guyz to relocate the bees safely and make sure that they are able to survive.
If you find a beehive on your own property that presents a threat, PLEASE don’t kill the bees! You can call the Bee Guyz directly at 504-231-2205 and they will be safely relocated them so they can continue their jobs pollinating plants! Check out their facebook page - Bee Guyz LLC!!!!
At your own home, you can help support our bee population by reducing your impact - reduce or eliminate your pesticide use, increase green spaces, and minimize urbanization. Pollution and climate change affect pollinators, too!
You can also plant for pollinators. Create pollinator-friendly habitat with native flowering plants that supply pollinators with nectar, pollen, and homes. City Park sells a variety of native plants which pollinators like at their monthly plant sales at the Pelican Greenhouse – the next one is July 20th.
Tell a friend. Educate your neighbors, schools, and community groups about the importance of pollinators. Host a dinner, a pollinated food cook-off or other event and invite your friends.
Join the Pollinator Partnership - Go to www.pollinator.org and click on “Get Involved.” Be part of a growing community of pollinator supporters.
-Meg Adams, Director of Sustainability and Enviornment Stewardship