The Urban Pollinators Project
Pollinators such as the Common Blue butterfly and Early-nesting Bumblebee, which are shown in these images, play a vital role in maintaining our food supplies. But like many others, these species are struggling in the UK countryside.
UK apples, strawberries, raspberries, beans and tomatoes are all reliant on insect pollinators. Globally, crop pollination services are estimated to be worth $153 billion per year. Understanding the influences that the landscape and other environmental factors can have on our pollinators is therefore of huge importance.
The Urban Pollinators Project, led by scientists at the University of Bristol, is studying how effective our towns and cities are for our bees and other pollinators.
A staggering 98% of the country’s flower-rich meadows have been lost since the end of the Second World War but gardens, allotments and other flower-rich habitats in urban areas could provide a haven for these important insects.
In Bristol, Leeds, Reading and Edinburgh, city-wide surveys of pollinators, together with 60 pollen- and nectar-rich flowering meadows are helping our pollinators flourish.
Read more on this topic at the project website: www.urbanpollinators.org
and blog: http://urbanpollinators.blogspot.co.uk/
For more BBSRC research on pollinators go to: ht.ly/tOmAb
Copyright: Jane Memmott from the Pollinators Project