(Horizon) Studying exactly how declining pollinator populations affect biodiversity is a challenge, as is studying any changes to bee behavior and foraging. One way to study an animal’s behavior is to track it. But this is tricky with bumble bees. Unless you use a radar system to pinpoint the position of the bee every few seconds…
(Minnesota Public Radio) The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources is putting the finishing touches on the state’s first comprehensive survey of this corner of the earth. Hundreds of scientists have spent more than three decades scouring the state, county by county, for rare and common plants and animals, as well as intact ecosystems that represent the land as it once was. “And what we’ve found is a mix of not so good news and good news.”
(Reading Eagle) “About five years ago, I heard about ground-nesting bees under the I-78 Schuylkill River bridge at Hamburg… These abrupt digger bees, also known as eastern chimney bees, are the only species in the eastern U.S. that make mud chimneys like this… Then I learned there was going to be a major construction and enlargement of the bridge…”
(The Guardian) Rare wildflowers and declining bee populations could start to recover during the coronavirus lockdown because many councils are leaving roadside verges uncut, according to Europe’s biggest conservation charity for wild plants.
(The Telegraph) Wildflowers will be planted on top of bus stops in Cardiff, the capital of Wales, to help attract bees. The plans follow in the footsteps of the Dutch city of Utrecht which installed wildflowers on more than 300 of their bus stops last summer.
(Chesapeake Bay Program) Near a swampy forest littered with trash, two biologists went searching for insects. A chance of rain had dampened their morning prospects, but with the temperature climbing, the mild afternoon in March held the chance that their target species would be active: ground-nesting bees and tiger beetles. “Sand habitats are a cornerstone of where we go to look for rare things, but also should be the cornerstone of conservation.”
(Star Tribune) The state’s Board of Water and Soil Resources will select the first 500 or so homeowners this week to receive funding under the trial program, which will pay residents up to $350 to plant pollinator gardens or convert their traditional grass lawns to more bee-friendly yards. Interest has been high enough that the state will keep accepting applications online until early June. “We knew there were going to be a lot of applications for this, but we didn’t know we were going to get close to 6,000 of them in just this first round.”
(Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation) The Virginia Pollinator-Smart Program is an initiative to encourage pollinator-smart solar development in the commonwealth. A key focus the certification is the use of Virginia native plant species for these projects.