Sunday, July 12, 2015

Pretty Pollinators

     Pollinators are in big trouble.  And if they are in trouble, humans are in trouble!  U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service reports that 75% of plants and 75% of our food supply depend on pollinators.  They include a lot of different animals including insects and even bats in some places in the world.  This is a presentation of some pretty flowers and pollinators as well as insects which like to feed on plants.  You've probably heard of the precipitous drop in Monarch Butterfly populations.  Perhaps you've heard of the same thing happening to honey bee populations.  There is reason to be concerned as many different causes are implicated including anything which is used to eradicate "weeds."  So many of these weeds are very important to pollinators.  Milkweed with Monarchs.  Pesticide free plants with honey bees.  GMO crops and herbicides are implicated as an issue.  More research is called for to find pollinator friendly herbicides but that's a tough challenge.  It's an obvious relationship that pollinators need weeds and weeds need pollinators.  And humans need both as well as a good food supply.  Challenges indeed!  But for now, enjoy some pretty pollinators and other plant loving insects.

A clear-wing moth slurps up nectar from Woolly Verbena.

Juvenile assassin bugs rest on Woolly Verbena.

A female Widow Skimmer visits the verbena.

A Red Admiral loves the verbena too.

A Sleepy Orange butterfly takes on nourishment on the verbena.

A bumblebee loves on Silktop Dalea.

Bumblebees spreading pollen on a Bull Thistle.

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