What Are Pollinators?
Pollinators are animals that transfer pollen between plants, helping them grow and reproduce. Common pollinators include birds, bats, butterflies, moths, flies, beetles, small mammals, and bees. They help sustain ecosystems and produce natural resources. Healthy pollinator populations lead to a natural environment that flourishes.
How Does Pollination Work?
Pollen moves from the anther to the stigma. The anther is the male part of the plant and the stigma is the female part. The flower produces seeds or fruit, which allows more plants to grow later. Pollinators carry pollen on their bodies, helping it travel farther and reach more plants.
What Are the Benefits of Pollinators?
Most plants need help with pollination. Pollinators help with the growth of fruits, vegetables, and nuts. Pollinators support plant growth, which helps clean the air and support other wildlife.
How Can You Help?
One way to help is to plant pollinator-friendly plants in your garden. Avoid using pesticides or herbicides that kill pollinator plants or animals. Add natural habitat spaces into lawns, urban parks, or farmland. Another way to help is to support farmers and beekeepers by purchasing local honey and vegetables. Ultimately, spread the word about pollinators to your friends and family!
Existing Manhattan Parks and Recreation Pollinator Pockets
The MHKPRD park system contains multiple existing areas with pollinator vegetation. For example, Warner Memorial Park offers one of the largest expanses of undeveloped open space within the City of Manhattan. Have you been to this park? Check out this hidden gem located off of Warner Park Road on the west side of town.
NRPA Parks for Pollinators BioBlitz 2023
The Parks for Pollinators campaign aims to raise public awareness of the pollinator crisis and encourage local action through public parks and recreation.
The National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA) is coordinating a national Parks for Pollinators BioBlitz event to engage, educate and help more people understand the importance of pollinator and native habitats in their local communities.
What is a BioBlitz?
‘Bio’ means ‘life’ and ‘Blitz’ means ”to do something quickly and intensively.” Together they make ‘BioBlitz’ — a collaborative race against the clock to discover as many species as possible within a set location during a defined time period.
A BioBlitz usually comprises a group of scientists, naturalists, park staff and other members of the public working together. As an informal and fun way to create a snapshot of the variety of life found in an area, these events provide an opportunity for participants to learn together and share their expertise and enthusiasm for nature. BioBlitzes make engaging with science easy and fun while raising awareness about the role of biological recording. They also give the public an opportunity to contribute to a genuine scientific survey. A BioBlitz can be carried out anywhere that there is wildlife, including urban and rural areas or inland and coastal locations.
What is the Parks for Pollinators BioBlitz?
The Parks for Pollinators BioBlitz is a national effort for people to find and document pollinator-friendly plants and pollinators across the country in partnership with their local park and recreation agency. It’s a national campaign to see who can make the most observations, engage the most people and promote pollinator awareness and education. The results not only make an impact for awareness of pollinators nationally and for those who participate, but they also help agencies know what pollinator and plant species are in their parks and help them plan for how to protect them and promote biodiversity.
How can I participate?
The Parks for Pollinators BioBlitz will be utilizing the iNaturalist platform. This platform allows our complied results to be shared and calculated up to a national page within the platform and will show the collective impact for this event.
To follow our local observations, click on the Parks for Pollinators 2023: City of Manhattan Parks and Recreation link.
To participate, simply download the Seek by iNaturalist app on your smartphone and start exploring the pollinators in your area!