Let Native Pollinators Add To Your Farm's Bottom Line
Pollination is vital to high–quality and high-quantity crop production. One of every three forkfuls of food we eat comes from crops pollinated by insects. The demand for pollination services is rising at the same time that pollinator abundance and diversity are declining. While native bees may not be able to replace the honey bee (the single most important pollinator species), they can contribute significantly to crop pollination. The pollination services native bees provide are contingent on both landscape and farm practices that influence bee habitat. Integrating practices that support native bee population makes sense economically for the farms of New Jersey.
Here are some things you can do:
Don't Kill Them
Avoid killing off the native pollinators on your farm by minimizing insecticide applications during bloom, as well as minimizing the impact of mowing, haying, burning during the periods bees are most active.
Recognize Plants Preferred by Native Pollinators
Plants that are preferred by native bees, attract more pollinators to your property.
Establish Areas of Pollinator Habitat
Look at ways to create or preserve pollinator habitat around the farm to encourage nesting.
Rachael WinfreeAs a pollination ecologist, Rachael Winfree helps farmers integrate native pollinators into their crop pollination programs.
|Native Bee Benefits (pdf) How to restore native pollinators to your farm or garden.|
|New Jersey Native Bees (pdf) A visual guide to some of the more common bee species native to New Jersey.|
- Managing Alternative Pollinators (PDF)
- Cranberry Pollination: An Overview (Doc)
- Xerces Society Guidance on Pollinator Habitat in Agriculture
- USDA NRCS Farming for Pollinators
- Native Bee Pollinator Responses to Blueberry Pest Management in Michigan - PowerPoint Presentation (R Isaacs, SARE 2008)
- USDA NRCS Pollinator Habitat Cost Share Programs
- Technical Document: Habitat Development for Pollinators
- Technical Document: Native pollinators
- Managing the Native Blue Orchard Bee in Orchard Pollination (USDA SARE 2001)
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Photos: Jack Rabin