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News Release

NRCS Celebrates Our Caribbean Pollinators!

Contact:
Edwin Más, Plant Materials Specialist
787-831-3464 x106


Happy National Pollinators Week - Photo of honeybee on sunflowerThis week, June 19-25, is National Pollinator Week and the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service is celebrating our Caribbean Area pollinators!

Bees, butterflies, a bats, beetles, moths, birds and other creatures are all pollinators and help provide fruits, vegetables, grains, beverages, medicine and fiber.

Pollinators play a crucial role in the reproduction of many plants in the Caribbean Area. Pollinators are responsible for 1 out of every 3 bites of food we eat. Animal pollinators, especially bees, are critical for producing the food & fiber we need to survive.

But despite their value, many pollinator species are in trouble. Habitat loss, degradation and fragmentation threaten our pollinators. As native vegetation is replaced by roads, lawns, crops and non-native gardens, pollinators lose the food and nesting sites they need to survive. Pesticides can also harm our pollinators.

To fight bee population declines, NRCS is working with farmers and private landowners to create habitat for pollinators through conservation. NRCS is helping farmers implement more than 30 conservation practices to help enhance pollinator habitat. This includes everything from planting wildflowers and native grasses to improving pasture management. Practices that help improve pollinator habitat also help improve water quality, soil health, and working lands productivity. Conservation practices are good for the environment and the farmer’s bottom line.

NRCS Caribbean Pollinator Bee factsheets (Español) provide information on native pollinators, and the wild flowers that attract them, to help farmers and property owners increase pollinator habitat and preserve our food supply.

Green-throated Carib hummingbird sips nectar from coleus flowers on St. Thomas, USVI. (Photo courtesy of Albion Chico George.)What can you do?

To help us celebrate National Pollinator Week, here’s how you can create habitat for all kinds of pollinators:

  • Plant native, flowering species.
  • Find non-chemical solutions to reduce or eliminate the use of pesticides in your landscape. Incorporate plants that attract beneficial insects for pest control and, if you do use pesticides, use them sparingly and responsibly.
  • Accept some plant damage on plants meant to provide habitat for butterfly and moth larvae.
  • Provide clean water for pollinators with a shallow dish, bowl, or birdbath with half-submerged stones for perches.
  • Leave dead tree trunks, also called “snags,” in your landscape for wood-nesting bees and beetles.
  • Support land conservation in your community by helping to create and maintain community gardens and green spaces to ensure that pollinators have appropriate habitat.
  • Bring pollinators to your farm with just a few simple steps: http://ow.ly/wc6q301ncZc

Related Resources

Five Types of Pollinators - Birds, Bats, Butterflies, Bees, Beetles

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