Help save our declining pollinators! Offer landowners tax grants for planting wildflower fields or keeping existing meadows, keeping old fence rows and seed funding programs.
As many of you are aware Pollinators affect 35 percent of the world’s food crop production, increasing the output of 87 of the leading crops worldwide. There is a new study co-authored by a UC Berkeley conservation biologist. The study is the first global estimate of food crop production that is reliant upon animal pollination. It comes one week after a National Research Council report detailed the troubling decline in populations of key North American pollinators.
We are all in this together!
My family and I live in an amazing farming community, we are so thankful! Generations of families working the same fields for fifty to one hundred plus years. They love their land and way of life; you can see and feel this truth. To make an ever increasing hard living our farmers (our families and friends) are clearing fence rows to gain much needed land to plant their crops for feed and food. These hundred plus year old fence rows contain many trees and bushes that our pollinators thrive on; such as apple trees, service berries, wild cherry, dogwood, basswood, elderberry, sumac, pussy willow, maple, birch, honey suckle, choke cherry, buck thorn, hawthorn, and mountain ash to name a few. Don’t get me started on trying to list all the beneficial plants for pollinators 😊 Fence rows are also superhighways for our wildlife; as the fence rows disappear, a much-needed habitat is also disappearing. The corn and soybeans have been toted the main suspect of our declining bee populations (seeds are coated with Neonicotinoids, including clothianidin and thiamethoxam, which are a class of insecticide commonly applied as a coating to corn and soybean seeds to protect them from early-season pests). These caring nurturing farmers when made aware of a Save the Bees Program or another incentive, may like to gift a few acres for the bees!
Among these hard-working farmers live another breed of families; those who long for a quieter way of life; gardeners, hobbyists, farmsteads, homesteaders who all have a love of nature and the great outdoors. This is where we fit in and a great number of others do too. Many of these families who own ten to over a hundred acres often rent out their land to farming tenants who need more land. This is a win win situation for many – the farmer works more land and the landowner receives a tax break. Currently they also may receive tax grants or programs for planting trees, managed wood lots and conservation land, to name a few.
~When we know better, we do better~
If both types of these landowners were given some incentive to gift acres of their land to our pollinators, I really think they would do it! Let’s offer all landowners tax grants for creating wildflower fields or keeping existing meadows, keeping old fence rows and seed funding programs. A funding program could help with the cost of the wildflower seeds; seeds are very expensive, in 2019 alone, we spent 600.00! Here is an interesting link to the CBC article about Toronto’s pollinator project. I wonder, why can’t we have a project like this for large landowners willing to plant five acres or more in wildflowers? We should be doing more in rural communities!
What Action Can We Take Country Wide?
- Create a large scale “Save the Polinators Program”
- Email and present to MPAC (property assessment)
- Email and present this information to your municipalities
- Email and present this information to your member of parliament
- Share this post on all your social media accounts
- Purchase and plant wildflower seeds now, we purchased ours here
Any other actions are much welcome!
“Be content to act, and leave the talking to others.” ―Baltasar Gracian
Additional information on Pollinators
“People should know that one third of the food we eat is related directly to the pollination services of bees,” says Ernesto Guzman, environmental sciences professor and Pinchin Family Chair in Bee Health. “If we don’t keep a healthy, strong abundance of bees, it is going to be difficult to produce these products.”
In Ontario, 32 of our economically important crops are pollinated by bees and other animals. Worldwide the estimated economic value of crops that are reliant on pollination is $690 billion per year. https://www.uoguelph.ca/oac/news/meet-ontarios-pollinators
Definition – Pollination, the transfer of pollen from the male component of a plant to the female, is arguably the most important ecosystem service. When pollination is successful it results in fertilization and the development of a fruit, nut or seed.
“When you do the things in the present that you can see, you are shaping the future that you are yet to see.” ― Idowu Koyenikan
Photography – Serena Mor