Madison’s new Pollinator Protection Task Force has recently released a report on what the city can do to help bees, butterflies, hummingbirds, and other pollinators. Following the lead of the White House, which has called for an “all hands, all lands” approach to address the rapidly-declining populations of key pollinators, Madison’s plan focuses on the importance of pollinators for our food system.
The plan lays out four basic strategies to restore habitat for pollinators:
- More flowering plants.
- More non-plant habitat, such as bare ground (used by native bees for nesting) and unraked leaves (used by butterflies for overwintering).
- Less mowing.
- Less pesticide usage.
The plan notes that the major obstacle to implementing these steps is concern on the part of city residents who find pollinator habitat unattractive. The plan calls for education and outreach programs to allay fears about the perceived dangers of pollinator-friendly landscaping practices.
The plan can be read here.