Pollinator Protection

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Tribal Pollinator Protection Plan Builder List

The purpose of the builder list is to provide managers with access to invaluable resources for building their Tribal Pollinator Protection Plan (TP3). TP3’s can be as unique as the Tribal community that is developing the plan and as simple or as complex as is needed to meet the needs of a tribal community.

This builder list provides links to web resources that can aid Tribal managers in researching basic information about pollinator protection, pollinator habitat, potential funding resources, survey tools, pollinator plants and much more.

The resource list is a portal to external websites. Links from the Saint Regis Mohawk Tribe, Environment Division does not constitute an endorsement by the Saint Regis Mohawk Tribe, Environment Division of the third parties or their products and services. The Saint Regis Mohawk Tribe, Environment Division provides website links as a service and is not responsible for the accuracy or content of information contained in these sites.

The portal provides a brief abstract/synopsis of each of the resource links and the type of information that is available to help managers evaluate a site before going to it. Hopefully, this will streamline the research process by reducing time with web searches and make information readily available.

Honey Bees and Managed Bees Resources

USDA NRCS – This is USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service’s website for honey bee or managed bee conservation efforts. The site is geared toward agricultural producers, providing technical and financial assistance.

This website is ideal for learning about conservation practices such as planting of cover crops, planting wildflowers and native grasses in buffer areas not in agricultural production. The financial resources are connected to NRC’s traditional programs, The Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP), Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP) and Agricultural and Conservation Easement Program (ACEP) to provide assistance to help implement conservation these practices.

There are targeted honey bee efforts in the states of Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wisconsin that Tribe’s may wish to learn more about.

There are several many other links including information for farmers, gardeners and general information about pollinators in this website.

Conservation Work for Honey Bees | NRCS

Honey Bee Health Coalition

Honey Bee Health Coalition - Website

This website is all about beekeepers and improving the health of honey bees because of their importance to agricultural production. The coalition is comprised of a wide range of members from across the nation, internationally including honey producers, industries, trade organizations, agricultural producers, fruit growers and wildlife conservation groups. Their goal is collaborative “solutions for honey bee health”.

From this website you will learn about hive management controlling crop pests and safeguarding pollinator health as well as some informative outreach and education materials. The coalition has a Tools and Resources link relating to improving honey bee health that are free of charge.

One example of a tool is an interactive presentation, “Bee Integrated Demonstration Project” which is based in North Dakota and is measuring impacts on bee populations for three years.

Bee Integrated Demonstration Project

Plants

For those with an interest in plants important to pollinator protection and habitat conservation and enhancement there are several links to sites that can help with identifying plants, fact sheets and guidance that are either general or specific to a geographic region. In the cases of certain NRCS funded program, like EQIP, there may be contractual requirements to utilize specifically approved plants, specification sheet, to fulfill contract terms.

NRCS documents for pollinator conservation and enhancement: Technical documents including plant lists, fact sheets and general guidance.

Pollinators NRCS Documents

This is a direct link to NRCS, “Plants for Pollinators”. You may come full circle to the previous link but this site contains a full listing of plant information that benefits pollinators.

Plants for Pollinators | NRCS

This link is a “commercial” site, Safer® Brand that promotes organic gardening products. The site identifies “Top 30” plants to attract pollinators as a beneficial way to having a great garden. There are lots of nice photographs along with growing zone information for each plant listed.
Top 30 Plants That Attract Pollinators

Here is a direct link to a PDF file, “Selecting Plants for Pollinators, A Regional Guide for Farmers, Land Managers, and Gardeners in the Eastern Broadleaf Forest, Continental Province.” This includes the states of Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Tennessee and parts of Alabama, Arkansas, Iowa, Michigan, New York, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin. This guide is described as a plant selection tool to help managers influence pollinators populations while managing land.

Selecting Plants For Pollinators

The University of Minnesota Extension’s website, Flowers for Pollinators provides information about creating pollinator-friendly landscapes, information on pollinator biology and identification and pollinator conservation to mention a few. The information on this site is specific to Minnesota and would be of benefits to Tribe’s in that state, listing “Plants for Minnesota Bees”. Flowers for Pollinators | Yard and Garden | University of Minnesota Extension

For some full-color graphics and publicly available posters that will help with plant identification, outreach and education this, “Bee and pollinator books by Heather Holm”, is a great site to visit. In addition to posters and books on plants and pollinators there are two great guides, “Native Perennials for Bees” and Native Trees and Shrubs for Pollinators that will be of great interest to Tribal managers. This is a commercial site and has a lot to offer for no charge and also offers other resources for purchase.

Plant Lists & Posters - Bee and Pollinator Books by Heather Holm

Pollinator Habitat

USDA operates 25 Plant Materials Centers (PMC’s) that support USDA conservation programs and practices like EQIP. Pollinator protection is part of the PMC’s overall conservation efforts. This website will provide managers with information about the pollinator values for plants, plant guides and other publications relating to pollinators. This website will be useful for researching background information for a tribal pollinator protection plan. As an example the website includes a brochure entitled, Wildflowers of North Dakota and their Medicinal Uses, Part II. Information like this may have high value for a Tribal nation.

Pollinator Habitat | NRCS Plant Materials Program

Minnesota Board of Water & Soil Resources(BWSR) Pollinator toolbox

The state of Minnesota was prompted by the decline of pollinators (managed bees and native bees and butterflies) to take leadership on the issue of supporting pollinator populations. BWSR’s approach was to increase awareness, support enhancement of pollinator habitat, incorporating pollinator habitat into BWSR programs and the creation of a “toolbox” to guide pollinator projects. The toolbox and BWSR initiatives are focused on the state of Minnesota and will be of direct benefit to Tribes in Minnesota. The toolbox is an excellent web based tool that walks managers through an 8 step process. The first 2 steps are BWSR program specific but the remaining 6 provide value as a structured process for thinking through habitat assessments, searching plants and seed mixes, preparing for planting, planting, maintenance and outreach. BWSR has done a lot of work that can incorporated into pollinator protection plans. This is a worthwhile site to learn how to get things done from start to finish.

Pollinator Initiative | BWSR

Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center

The center is located in Austin, Texas and their mission is to inspire conservation of native plants through gardens, research, education, consulting and outreach programs.

If Bumble Bees are your interest then the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center provides information through a series of search filters by State, habitat and other site condition filters to create a plant species list for attracting large numbers of bumble bees. Plant information will be obtained including pictures, USDA Plant information, plant characteristics, growing information and benefits to bumble bees and other insects. Users will also be directed to seed or plant sources. If a literature search is needed the plant information contains a bibliography to help support any proposal or research project needing references.

Special Collection: Special Value to Bumble Bees | NPIN

The USFS provides this excellent website filled with information about creating pollinator-friendly landscapes around homes and workplaces. There are some quick tips for inspiration about feeders, salt licks and larval friendly landscapes. Scroll down and you fill find information on using Native plants to attract pollinators.

Gardening for Pollinators | USDA Forest Service

Conservation

The Xerces Society is dedicated to invertebrate conservation. Founded in 1971, and named after the now extinct Xerces blue butterfly (Glaucopsyche xerces), the Xerces Society for invertebrate Conservation is the oldest and largest pollinator conservation organization in the United States.

Xerces work is science-based using applied science, working with other scientists, land managers, educators, policy makers, farmers and citizens to achieve their mission of protecting wildlife through conservation of invertebrates and their habitat.

On this website you will find information such as the Milkweed seed finder that utilizes drop down menus to search for seeds by species and/or state. You will be provided information about seeds suppliers.

The site has a Pollinator Conservation Resource Center link that will take you information about plant lists, habitat conservation guides and more by region. This is a good hub for many other sources of information such as pollinator plants, conservation guides, plant nurseries and seed companies, bee identification and monitoring. Unique to Xerces is probably the their policy analysis paper.

Xerces is probably one of the most comprehensive pollinator protection websites to visit.

The Xerces Society Website

A key publication is the Xerces Society’s Pollinator Conservation Program which provides a practical technical approach to habitat restoration and management-

Pollinator Program Fact Sheet Mar. 2015 | The Xerces Society

Backyard Conservation

Outreach, education, teaching and inspiring others is vital to gaining support for a plan. Involving others and making smaller steps can lead to larger successes within Tribal communities, regionally and nationally with minimal input of resources.

Individual or small group involvement can lead increasing food and shelter for birds and other wildlife, control soil erosion, reduce sediment in waterways, conserve water and improve water quality, inspire a stewardship ethic, and beautify the landscape.

These websites have information that is printer ready for distribution at community outreach events and meetings.

This USDA website provides tip sheets that anyone can use on an individual basis for improving backyard habitat. The site lists partnerships and links to other organizations such the National Audubon Society, US Forest Service, US Fish and Wildlife Service and others for additional information that relate to pollinators like birds, bats and other insects. Some of the links aren’t necessarily pollinator protection related so you users may have to dig a little deeper on those sites for information.

Backyard Conservation | NRCS

The Wildlife Habitat Tip Sheet link in particular provides a list of nectar plants for Hummingbirds, Butterflies and Bees. Users will have to scroll down on the page to find these though.

Wildlife Habitat | NRCS

Surveys and Identification

Pollinator surveys and identification are important aspects of pollinator protection plans. Some of these links are within aforementioned web resources but are presented here as direct links due to their specific nature.

Xerces Society

Bumble Bee pocket identification guides – All downloadable
Bumble Bee Pocket Identification Guides
Field Guide for Migratory Dragonflies
Macroinvertebrates of the Pacific Northwest

Identification Guides | The Xerces Society

Need to do surveys and monitoring? It’s easy to learn and in some instances have your data incorporated into a larger national database. These tools also provide excellent outreach opportunities for communities to get involved.

Streamlined Bee Monitoring Protocol – The guide provides instructions on assessing pollinator habitat quality and diversity by monitoring native bees. A downloadable file, the protocol is practical and full of illustrations and pictures and provides a data sheet. This may be a good way to kick-start an assessment and get your project off the ground.

Streamlined Bee Monitoring Protocol | The Xerces Society

Bumble Bee Watch

Get involved, get recognized, get information. This is an online tracking system for bumble bee sightings that is fun, educational and interactive. Anyone can participate by taking photos of bumble bees and uploading them to the Bumble Bee Watch website following their easy to follow, step-by-step instructions. Once your sighting is verified you can view it on their interactive map. You can also check out other sightings as well.

This is a useful tool to use and get familiar with Bumble Bee identification and an easy way to involve your community as citizen scientists.

Bumble Bee Watch Website

Bee Spotter

This is another citizen-scientist web-based program but is useful only for the states of Illinois, Indiana, Missouri and Ohio with the hope of expanding to other states. There are some excellent “Bee Topics” in the website such as identification bees, bee biology and other educational resources to help you brush up on bee information.

Bee Spotter Website