Identifying and assessing priority habitat resources for bumble bees and other pollinators using collaborative community-based conservation.

This Habitat Stewardship Program funded project is implementing pollinator surveys in and and around Yellowknife with a focus on SARA-listed species including the yellow-banded and gypsy cuckoo bumble bees. Pollinators contribute 1-in-3 mouthfuls of food we eat, and support the reproduction of 80% of terrestrial plants in Canada. Pollinators are vital to building ecosystem resilience and supporting ecological services, including the aforementioned food production and plant reproduction, but pollinators and their habitat also support biodiversity, carbon sequestration, water and nutrient cycling, climate mitigation, and cultural services. Unfortunately pollinators are declining at alarming rates. This decline is driven largely by a synergy of habitat loss and disturbance, exacerbated by climate change.

Canadians want to take action, but face barriers: lack of knowledge of issues and solutions, and a lack of access to native plants in order to support habitat. We are leveraging awareness into action by empowering well-trained volunteers to recruit their neighbours to survey pollinators in the local landscape to determine which floral resources at-risk bumble bees and other pollinators are frequently visiting. This information can then be used to help conservation efforts for at-risk bumble bees and pollinators in general around Yellowknife through habitat preservation and the planting of key floral species.

The goal of this project is to collect information on the associations that bumble bees and other pollinators have with floral resources in and around Yellowknife in order to gain an understanding of critical food resources needed for survival by at-risk bumble bees, current local occurrence status of these bee species, as well as the stewardship capacity for listed species and their ecosystem services.

Training Modules

Anyone in Yellowknife can participate in the Plan Bee Community Science Project to help us learn more about the local plant-pollinator interactions! To participate, watch the following three training modules for a general overview about pollinators, to learn more about bumble bees and their importance to a northern landscape, and about how to properly record data during our upcoming summer field season.

More information on webinars COMING SOON.

Questions?

If you have any questions about pollinators or about how to get involved in the project, feel free to email Anthony Colangelo, the Plan Bee project lead, at ac@pollinator.org.