By Gaby Ho
Why do we need pollinators?
Did you know that pollinators such as bees, wasps, beetles and birds pollinate two thirds of Australia’s food crops?! Insects and bees carry pollen from one part of a plant to another to facilitate fertilisation. Without them doing their important jobs, we wouldn’t be able to enjoy fruit and veg such as eggplants, tomatoes, cauliflower, berries, almonds, apples, pears, pumpkins, almonds and the list goes on!
Unfortunately pollinators are under increasing threat, mostly due to loss of habitat and the use of some chemicals in agriculture and home gardens. EVERYONE can do their bit to help them out, it’s very easy! Simply plant some pollinator-friendly plants (PDF) to ensure our bees and insects have a steady supply of food throughout the year or why not make a pollinator-hotel? They make a great project for the kids.
Our insects are facing extinction
Not only do insects play an important role as pollinators, they also help to recycle nutrients and are important part of the food chain. Recent studies of insect populations from Australia and abroad have found that insects are in decline in many parts of the world with climate change, loss of habitat, pesticide use and pollution being the likely drivers of this decline.
Is Ungardening one of the solutions?
Manicured lawns are everywhere these days, but they are not helping our pollinators. A new trend is going around the world – Ungardening. Let your backyard turn into a wildlife heaven: have a little pond, plant things for wildlife to eat, don’t use pesticides, … Get some inspiration from this UK Guardian article.
Let’s keep our pollinators alive!