What's the buzz about pollinators?
We rely on them to pollinate the crops that feed us and to support healthy ecosystems that all living things need. Bees and butterflies are well-known, but birds, bats, moths, flies, beetles, wasps, and small mammals are pollinators too!
Meet Minnesota’s State Bee, the rusty patched bumble bee. Named for its rust-colored mark, it is native to this region and is important to wildflower and crop pollination.
In 2017 it was listed as endangered under the Endangered Species Act, becoming the first bee on the list. It has declined from approximately 87% of its historic range in the East and Upper Midwest, from habitat loss, intensive farming, pesticide use, disease, and climate change.
The rusty patched bumble bee (and many other pollinators) is our neighbor here in Burnsville. It was first sighted in 2018 at the Civic Center Prairie. In 2019 it was sighted in a new location, at a City park through a staff-lead survey. It has even been seen by residents in their gardens.
Your yard can benefit pollinators through a few simple gardening practices:
For more ideas, visit our environmentally-friendly landscaping page.