Just as Pink Goes Green stresses the delicate balance of our ecosystem, five years ago the U.S. Senate's unanimous approval and designation of the third week in June as National Pollinator Week marked a necessary step toward addressing the urgent issue of declining pollinator populations. Pollinator Week has now grown to be an international celebration of the valuable ecosystem services provided by bees, birds, butterflies, bats and beetles. The growing concern for pollinators is a sign of progress, but it is vital that we continue to maximize our collective effort. The U.S. Secretary of Agriculture signs the proclamation every year.
This year, the Pollinator Partnership is proud to announce that June 20-26, 2016 has been designated National Pollinator Week by the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Pollinating animals, including bees, birds, butterflies, bats, beetles and others, are vital to our delicate ecosystem, supporting terrestrial wildlife, providing healthy watershed, and more. Therefore, Pollinator Week is a week to get the importance of pollinators' message out to as many people as possible. It's not too early to start thinking about an event at your school, garden, church, store, etc. Pollinators positively affect all our lives -- let's SAVE them and CELEBRATE them!
Did you know that pollinators are responsible for pollinating nearly one-third of every bite of food we eat, or that the global value of crops pollinated by bees is estimated to be nearly $217 billion? These invaluable creatures are facing troubling declines in the U.S. The Pollinator Partnership (P2) is the world's largest organization dedicated exclusively to pollinator issues, supporting bees, butterflies, bats, birds, and more; and P2's efforts are working to reverse and prevent declines. (See more on the importance of bees to our environment in our Pink Goes Green blog, Busy as Bees.
Simply Have Areas Reserved for the Environment
P2 advocates the S.H.A.R.E. approach to helping pollinators and the planet. Every landscape can Simply Have Areas Reserved for the Environment - S.H.A.R.E. When you plant for pollinators, everyone benefits: plants, pollinators, and people.
As P2's Executive Director, Laurie Davies Adams, explains, "Each of us lives in a habitat; and we have the opportunity, in fact, the responsibility, to nurture and promote healthy habitat. By sharing a bit of lawn, a school yard, a farm border, an office landscape or a roadside with blooming pollinator-friendly plants, we create a connection that supports healthy ecosystems and a sustainable future. All of our actions join to build something invaluable to the very plants and pollinators that feed us."
Find out more about S.H.A.R.E. here and how you can get involved.
In 2012, Pollinator Week was recognized by official proclamations by both Sec. of Agriculture Tom Vilsack and Sec. of Interior Ken Salazar. This recognition of the agricultural and ecological roles of pollinators is coupled with proclamations by over 30 state governors. One significant Pollinator Week event took place on Monday, June 18, 2012, with a special U.S. Congressional Briefing in Washington, D.C., featuring the Congressional Pollinator Protection Caucus and USDA ARS Research Leader, Dr. Jeff Pettis and Jeff Underwood, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Deputy Assistant Director for Fisheries and Habitat Conservation. Over 100 events are taking place across the country and the continent during the week this year - see what is happening near you at http://pollinator.org/npw_events.htm. And learn more at http://www.fws.gov/pollinators/.