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Pollinator Conservation Program

Pollinator Conservation - Xerces Society
(Photo: Xerces Society / Jennifer Hopwood)

Pollinators are essential to our environment. The ecological service they provide is necessary for the reproduction of over 85% of the world’s flowering plants, including more than two-thirds of the world’s crop species. The United States alone grows more than 100 crops that either need or benefit from pollinators, and the economic value of these native pollinators is estimated at $3 billion per year in the U.S. Beyond agriculture, pollinators are keystone species in most terrestrial ecosystems. Fruits and seeds derived from insect pollination are a major part of the diet of approximately 25% of all birds, and of mammals ranging from red-backed voles to grizzly bears.

Unfortunately, in many places, the essential service of pollination is at risk from habitat loss, pesticide use, and introduced diseases. Follow the links below to learn more about these vital insects, the Xerces Society's pollinator conservation work, and how you can help.

 

Commit to Protecting Pollinators

Make your passion for pollinators a concrete commitment: Sign our Pollinator Protection Pledge, develop habitat on your land using region-specific information from our Pollinator Conservation Resource Center, or pursue a certification.

 

Conserving Pollinators in Your Landscape

The Xerces Society works across a broad array of landscapes to conserve pollinators, and can offer information to support your efforts.

Additional Resources for...

Pollinator Conservation on the Blog

The latest news from the Xerces Society's pollinator conservation team—including updates from the field; policy work; information on our certification programs, Bee City USA and Bee Better Certified; and more!

The majority of seed corn planted in the United States is coated with insecticides. Unsold seed corn is given to an ethanol plant for processing into biofuel—cheap disposal for the seed company and free raw material for the ethanol plant. But because this toxic material is not regulated as a pesticide, it has a significant impact on the environment and local communities.

Bees are generally thought of as creatures of open habitats, frequenting places with sunlight and plenty of flowers. But, given how much of the Eastern US was once blanketed in forests, shouldn’t there be some bee species that specialize on forest habitat? Research in New Jersey has shown that, indeed, many bees are forest associated, and that they are unlikely to persist in places where forests have been cleared.

This edition focuses on work done across the country to support monarch butterflies and other pollinators. Jessa Kay Cruz describes how Xerces supports groups in California undertaking habitat creation projects, and Jennifer Hopwood presents a series of fact sheets about milkweeds, part of a nationwide project to provide information to roadside managers.