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Why care about pollinators?

Guest Commentary

Monday, June 22, through Sunday, June 28, was Pollinator Week this year. Pollinators include bees, butterflies, birds, beetles, bats, wasps, flies, other insects and small mammals. 

They are responsible for helping to create one out of every three bites of the food we eat. They help bring us fruits, vegetables and nuts and help those plants to reproduce. 

They also almost invisibly help our earth by preventing  soil erosion and helping the plants that use carbon dioxide to make food.  

Bees are the most efficient of these creatures. There are 3,600 species of native bees. Some of these include mason, leafcutter, mining, woolcarder, hairy footed, nomad, sweat, squash and  blue orchard bees. Two-thirds of these bees live underground; one-third live in canes and tree trunks; 1%, the bumbles, live in old rodent holes. These native bees do not usually sting and are gentle insects. 

Only 2% of all insects are pests. Insects provide twice as much protein as fish or beef to their carnivore predators.

Thanks to the Xerces Society and Pollinator Partnership for this vital information.

 

Mary Lynn Kalogeras is one of the newest members of the Town of North East’s Conservation Advisory Council (CAC). She recently created a pollinator garden to be a habitat for bees, birds and butterflies on Century Boulevard in the village of Millerton for the community to learn from and enjoy.

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