New Update!

We have updated our NC Solar Technical Guidance Document! Last published in October 2018, we have now added new information, guidance, and pictures for an updated edition! Please share this far and wide with landowners, local governments, solar companies, and anyone else who might benefit from this information. Click here to find the document. As an added bonus, we have a newly drafted NC Solar Farm Monitoring Report that looks at the benefit of various types of pollinator vegetation and wildlife-friendly practices on solar farms across the State. Check it out here!

Photo courtesy of Gabriela Garrison
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National Pollinator Week is Almost Here!

Photo courtesy of Debbie Roos

National Pollinator Week is coming up: June 20-26. In celebration, we will be hosting a series of 3 (free!) webinars about some of our favorite insects! Here’s the schedule:

June 21, 1:00-2 pm: Join Dr. Elsa Youngsteadt, Assistant Professor at North Carolina State University, to chat about carpenter bees. They make sawdust of your porch, and they hover in your face every spring. Do you know what they are really up to inside those tunnels? In this talk, we’ll take a closer look at the life cycle and lifestyle of your biggest bee neighbors.

June 22, 1:00-2 pm: Join John Gerwin, Research Curator (Ornithology) and Educator (Nature-ology) with the NC Museum of Natural Sciences, as he discusses butterflies and moths of North Carolina. John will discuss his years of gardening with native plants in an urban, west Raleigh setting, and showcase some of the many butterflies and moths (Lepidoptera) that these plants attract. When John and his wife moved into their house in 2005, he documented a dozen butterflies that first year in the front and back yards. As of 2021 he has documented 44 species. Some are regular, others rather transient, but each adds to the old adage: build it, and they will come.

June 23, 1:00-2 pm: Join Lenny Lampel, Natural Resources Supervisor with the Mecklenburg County Park and Recreation’s Division of Nature Preserves and Natural Resources, as he discusses the fascinating world of beneficial insects. This presentation will introduce you to the diversity of insect life around us and the extremely important roles that they play in the environment. There will also be a discussion on the decline of insects and some of the current projects and efforts to better understand and protect them and their habitats. This is a great opportunity to learn about the impacts that insects have on our lives and the world that we live in.

***Sign up for one, or sign up for all! We can’t wait to see you there!**

REGISTER HERE:

https://www.eventbrite.com/e/ncpca-national-pollinator-week-2022-webinar-series-tickets-349904252037

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Like many other organizations, the NC Pollinator Conservation Alliance went virtual in 2021! We hosted several different webinars with topics such as native bees and prescribed fire, pollinator-friendly mosquito management, and fall garden planting. If you want to check out any of our webinars, please visit our YouTube page!

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4th Annual Pollinator Field Day!

We are back for our 4th annual Pollinator Field Day! We will be virtual again this year but hope to see everyone next year in the field. The event is June 22nd and starts at 3pm. We will have three speakers to talk about North Carolina native habitat for pollinators, native bees, and pesticide stewardship. You don’t want to miss it!

Presenters:

Debbie Roos (NC Cooperative Extension) – An Overview of the Top 25 Pollinator Plants in NC.

Elsa Youngsteadt, Hannah Levenson (NCSU) – Native Bees: Diversity and Identification.

Lewis Cauble (NCDA & CS) – Pesticide Misuse Inside and Outside of Hives: How to Avoid it.

Click here to register:

https://www.eventbrite.com/e/4th-annual-pollinator-field-day-tickets-158052054951

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Bees and Fire: Do they Mix?

Join us for for an exciting webinar on April 27th at 3pm: ‘Bees and Fire: Do they Mix?’

Prescribed fire has been an essential tool for forest restoration in the southeastern United States. Bees are essential components of these ecosystems, but how do bees cope with fire? This webinar looks at the evidence and gives a glimpse into recent and ongoing research in North Carolina’s fire-managed forests.

Presented by:

Clyde Sorenson, Professor, Department of Entomology & Plant Pathology, NC State University

Elsa Youngsteadt, Assistant Professor, Department of Applied Ecology, NC State University

Gabriela Garrison, Eastern Piedmont Habitat Conservation Coordinator, NC Wildlife Resources Commission

Register here: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/bees-and-fire-do-they-mix-tickets-149480529287

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3rd Annual Pollinator Field Day!

Kick off National Pollinator Week 2020 and join us for our 3rd annual Pollinator Field Day on June 22 at 3:00pm!  Due to current coronavirus circumstances, this event will be 100% VIRTUAL, so you can enjoy the program from the comfort of your home!  This event will feature the following presentations to teach you about native bees, habitat and pesticide stewardship:

  • Habitat for farms, roadsides or constructed pollinator meadows from seed.  
  • Native bee identification, life cycle and biology.
  • Pesticide application techniques to protect pollinators.

Bees, butterflies, moths and other beneficial insects provide valuable ecosystems services through pollination.  These same insects also pollinate the native plants in our rural and urban landscapes, helping to maintain our state’s lush green vegetation.  Helping pollinators has never been more important.

Spend part of your day in the ‘field’ with education, research and field-based experts, including a virtual visit to the pollinator habitat at the Cunningham Research Station in Kinston, and see how you can make a positive impact on pollinators through your work. 

Registration for Pollinator Field Day is FREE. Register below. The sessions have been approved for two credits for pesticide applicators in classes B, D, G, H, I, L, N, O, and X.
https://www.eventbrite.com/e/virtual-pollinator-field-day-tickets-92901162879

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The Wildlife Value of a Messy Garden

It’s that time of year when leaves are falling, plants are dying back and temperatures are dropping. The days are getting shorter, and we’re seeing fewer bees and butterflies flitting through the yard. You might think your yard has done its job for the season so it’s time to cut it back. You couldn’t be more wrong!! Seed heads, piles of leaves and bark and standing stems, provide forage and over wintering habitat for numberous birds and insects. For more information, check out this great article on fall gardens, here! If you’d like a handout to take to work, pass out to neighbors or hang on your refrigerator, check out this Messy Garden Fact Sheet we made for outreach events!

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NEW!! North Carolina Pollinator Toolkit Available!

Have you ever wondered how to plant pollinator habitat? Have you ever wondered what plant species to buy? Have you ever wondered about garden upkeep? Look no further! We have the answers to those questions and so much more! In collaboration with the NC Pollinator Conservation Alliance, the NC Botanical Garden has published a Pollinator Toolkit to answer any and all questions about pollinator habitat! Check it out here!

Photo courtesy of Debbie Roos
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Foreign Bees Monopolize Prize Resources in Biodiversity Hotspot

Have you ever wondered how native bees interact with non-native honey bees? Or if they interact at all? A recent study in San Diego County, a known biodiversity hotspot, found that honey bees make up 75% of the region’s observed pollinators. In addition, they focus their foraging efforts on the most abundantly flowering native plant species: “Their numerical dominance is even higher on the plant species that supply the largest amounts of pollen and nectar…this finding suggests that honey bees are disproportionately removing resources from the plant species that likely support the greatest diversity and abundance of native pollinator species.” An additional component of the study indicated that the repeated and increased visits to certain plant species may be causing damage to the actual flowers. Click here to get more details and information pertaining to this important work.

Photo courtesy of James Hung
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Bees Lead Researchers to Trailblazing Ecological Partnerships with Texas City

Researchers from Auburn University went to a small Texas town to study bee populations. They found much more diversity than expected. They also discovered three plants that seemed to be primary food sources for these bees. This led to the creation of a biodiversity ordinance that will protect these particular plants from disturbance or removal. Violation of this ordinance is considered a misdemeanor offense and will carry a penalty of $2,000 per occurrence. Natural resource and conservation organizations in North Carolina work with local governments to incorporate wildlife-friendly practices into their ordinances. We need to bring biodiversity ordinances to North Carolina – what a great idea! Click here to read the full article.

Photo courtesy of Laneige Conde
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