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Pollinator Week By: J. Muro




Let’s share the good news for the birds, bats, bees, and more; we can help them by protecting them, and announcing that the upcoming 22nd - 28th of June is National Pollinator Week! It is a celebratory week of doing things for our pollinating friends brought to us by Pollinator Partnership. PX3 will post a new blog each day of Pollinator Week on our website and an event for the next day you can get involved with on our Facebook page. Many events are virtual and easy to join! Start your Pollinator Week tomorrow with PX3's Pollinator Challenge!


Explore, https://www.pollinator.org/pollinator-week for a plethora of ways to get involved including lighting local plazas and buildings, connecting with your government, ideas to get outside, tips and trick for your own space, an amazing way to introduce yourself to Pollinator Partnership. If you have an event planned, post it on the map shared on the link as well with resources to make your event a big success. HAPPY POLLINATOR WEEK 2020


One great example is Miles for Monarchs from Monarch Joint Venture



The Pollinator Partnership proposed, and organized Pollinator Week, and continues to do so to this day, thanks to the U.S. Senate’s help, thirteen years ago. It was brought up due to the immediate attention to the decimating numbers of pollinators (numerous causes are as follows: loss of native plants, dominance of non-native plants and crops, pesticides, pollution, diseases, vast lawns with no flowers, roadways, habitat loss, degraded and fragmented lands, and global warming’s climate change). Now, world-wide, the celebration notices the ants, moths, beetles, bats, butterflies, birds, and bees’ heavy and hard work of contributing to the fruits, vegetables, herbs, and more flora-like ecosystem.


Pollinator Week 2020 is encouraged to be practiced safely due to covid-19. Some suggestions are to attend outdoors and find and learn more about the beetles, bees, moths, butterflies, hummingbirds, birds, and ants—the great pollinating team. While we can try to celebrate these pollinators, we can save them by planting pollinator friendly gardens whether it be in a small container to a big yard. There are also webinars that educate one about starting and maintaining a Pollinator friendly patch, as well as habitat management, and more. Attend a local library, and pick up a book on anything about gardening, pollinators, and each contributing insect, or watch a free film about them. (PX3 pollinator book review coming June 23rd)




(Source: https://xerces.org/pollinator-conservation/pollinator-friendly-plant-lists. Photo: Xerces Society, Jennifer Hopwood)


One can become an empowered and well educated outdoor Naturalist (one who studies everything in the Natural World), entomologist (scientist who studies bugs), and/or lepidopterist (scientist who studies moths/skippers/butterflies), and more by tapping into a few nature friendly FREE apps such as the U.S. National Phenology Network (U.S. NPN), and being an active nature citizen in the U.S. NPN’s Nature’s Notebook to record how many caterpillars, moths, butterflies, and eggs have been found. The USA National Phenology Network was established in 2007 to collect, store, and share phenology data and information.


“The USA National Phenology Network consists of a National Coordinating Office (NCO), thousands of volunteer observers and many partners, including research scientists, resource managers, educators, and policy-makers. Anyone who participates in Nature’s Notebook or collaborates with NCO staff to advance the science of phenology or to inform decisions is part of the USA-NPN.

Nature’s Notebook is a national phenology program in which professional and volunteer scientists record long-term observations of plant and animal life stages.” (Source: https://www.usanpn.org/about)


Other apps such as iNaturalist and iBird are helpful tools where one can take a picture with their cell phone of any bug, ant, beetle, or birds and it will identify it for you in a matter of seconds, minutes, or days. Educating oneself about the pollinators around us is a very powerful tool to share where they are, how many there are, and how well they are doing, as well as strengthening one’s skills in biology, botany, and anything in the natural world. It is free, could be done at one’s own time, any season applies, and benefits both the flora, fauna, and humans, as a connected team on this planet. Check out the PX3 Blog for more Citizen Science opportunities June 26th!


Pollinator week encourages “Lightings” or light shows at night are a sight for any pedestrians to enjoy, whether it be from holiday lights, to neon lights, and colourful building lights. From Niagara Falls to the Empire State Building, and a few noticeable buildings, these night-time architectural lightings show a bright orange and yellow in honor of Pollinator Week. We can also encourage several nearby local areas and buildings to light up these colours in honor of them. There is an already downloadable lighting request set-up ready for those who wish to take action. Maybe we can see more of Baltimore’s city lights shine for those busy insects’ honors?




(National Aquarium in Baltimore at night in the harbour; photo by: Tracey Brown, source: https://www.aqua.org/blog/2016/January/Night-at-the-Aquarium


In several states, Pollinator Week has been announced legally when many citizens have reached out to their state governor to have made it happen; you can too! Gratitude to both the citizens in action and their state governors, the pollinators now have much needed time and attention.

Pollinator Partnerships’s helpful website assists in finding out more information on how to help pollinators, with a handy and detailed toolkit as well as research materials on what to grow for them, social media sites, and numerous ways to celebrate them.


Whether one is young, old, or in a group or solo work, there are many suggestions to those who are helpful in our ecosystem to remain balanced, the bees, moths, ants, butterflies, beetles, birds, and hummingbirds. They all would benefit from us participating in encouraging lightings to gardening pollinator friendly gardens and being a nature citizen scientist.



Sources:


Pollinator Week 2020 logo source & Pollinator Partnership info.: https://www.pollinator.org/pollinator.org/assets/generalFiles/Pollinator-Week-2020-Toolkit_V2.pdf


USA National Phenology Network (Nature’s Notebook) info.: https://www.usanpn.org/home


The Great Pollinator Project info.: http://greatpollinatorproject.org/conservation/major-threats-to-pollinators


Photo of bee pollinating yellow & red flower, Xerces Society:

https://xerces.org/pollinator-conservation/pollinator-friendly-plant-lists


Photo of National Aquarium in Baltimore:

https://www.aqua.org/blog/2016/January/Night-at-the-Aquarium


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