2017 Pollinator Friendly Calendar

3/9/2017: Pollinator Best Practices Summit . 800 AM - 1200 PM.  Dakota County Lodge, St. Paul.  Experts and inspiration for counties, cities, townships, school districts on how to best manage parks, public lands, roadsides for pollinators. Limited seating, register now.

3/29/2017: Pollinator Trivia & Beer Release Party. 5:30 PM - 8:00 PM.  Urban Growler Brewery, 2325 Endicott Street, St. Paul 55114.  Check out Urban Growler's Plow to Pint Honey IPA and learn about bees.

4/22/17: Stillwater Earth Day. 10 AM - 2 PM. Riverfront behind Rivermarket, Stillwater.

4/21/17: PFA at St. Croix River Association Basin Summit, River Falls University, Wisconsin.

4/28/17-4/29/17: PFA co-sponsor of the 35th National Pesticide Forum. Ecological and Organic Strategies for Regeneration.  U of M Humphrey School of Public Affairs, Minneapolis.  Registration here.

5/7/17: 10 AM - 1 PM. Pollinator Friendly Garden Party at Pollinator Park with Minnesota Native Landscapes. 517Stillwater.  10 am - 1 pm.  Corner of Laurel Street West and Owen Street North, 517 Owen Street North, Stillwater.  Refreshments provided, bring your garden trowel and gloves.

5/18/17: PFA presents pollinator friendly resolution to White Bear Lake Township. 630 PM

5/20/17: 10 AM - 1 PM.  Pollinator Friendly Alliance - Pollinator Park Garden Party.  Demonstrations by Master Beekeeper, Mike Mac from Bone Lake Apairy and Claudia Morgan, professional gardener and landscaper with Gardenside.  Come join us -- bee a steward at the Pollinator Park flower garden by helping us groom, plant and weed the pollinator flower garden.  Corner of Laurel Street West and Owen Street North, 517 Owen Street North, Stillwater.  Refreshments provided, bring your garden trowel and gloves.


Minnesota House, Senate committees eliminate key pollinator protections from agriculture bills

on Thursday, March 9th, both the Senate and House Agriculture Policy Committees voted against legislation that would give the Minnesota Department of Agriculture the authority to track and regulate pesticide seed coatings, which are linked to decline of bees and other pollinators.   see more about coated seeds here.

Contact the Agriculture Policy Committees and let them know you support bees not big pesticide seed. House and Senate.

PESTICIDE COATED SEED HARMS BEES


BEST PRACTICES FOR POLLINATORS SUMMIT

was a huge success on March 9, 2017

Cities, Counties and State agencies came from all over Minnesota to learn how to be better stewards for pollinators and implement innovative best practices for prairie restoration, land management, soil health and alternatives to bee-harming pesticides.

Summit-goers said "The immense amount of information on education was phenomenol",  "All the speakers were so great, it's hard to pick one. I learned a lot to take back to my work in local government.", "The overall combination of information new and some a repeat, woven together to show next steps, what's working, give hope, and understand where we are historically.", "All the topics were excellent. I have never been to a more comprehensive summit. You tackled the issue from so many directions, speakers were fantastic. I appreciate the short but meaningful talks, the planning team was amazing. You should reproduce this summit in the future." , "This has been THE best informational session I have been to in many years. Well done!"

 


In 2013 the Xerces Society petitioned the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to protect the rusty patched bumble bee (Bombus affinis) as an endangered species. Today the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced that it is proposing to list the rusty patched bumble bee as an endangered species under the Endangered Species Act. This is a huge victory for bumble bee conservation.

The rusty patched bumble bee was once widespread, has precipitously declined from 9/10ths of its range, and has at least two threats for which existing regulatory mechanisms are inadequate to protect them, the widespread use of toxic insecticides whose toxicity to native bees were not adequately considered in the pesticide approval process and the distribution of commercial bumble bees within the range of the rusty patched bumble bee that are not required to be free of pathogens. Listing the rusty patched bumble bee under the ESA will require that its needs be considered when federal actions—like the registration of new pesticides—are taken. In addition, protecting this bee from threats of disease, pesticide, and habitat loss, may also help many of the other 3,600 species of native bees that exist on the American landscape.

READ MORE HERE from Xerces Society


MINNESOTA FIRST FOR POLLINATORS

On August 26th, 2016, Governor Dayton made Minnesota first with the recent EXECUTIVE ORDER TO PROTECT POLLINATORS. It's great news for our pollinators and environment too. The order includes: 1) Restrictions on bee-harming neonic and systemic pesticides including agricultural use; 2) Pollinator habitat restoration; 3) Development of an inter-agency committee to improve pollinator protection. 
BUT THE POLLINATOR PROTECTION ORDER IS BEING THREATENED. Here's what you can do to help:  Call Governor Dayton 651-201-3400 and Agriculture Commissioner Frederickson 651-201-6219 and tell them "We support the pollinator executive order for more pollinator protection and less pesticide use".
READ THE ORIGINAL SCOPING DOCUMENT AND PROPOSED RESTRICTIONS HERE

“...Minnesota set the strongest rules in the nation to protect pollinators from pesticides,” said Lex Horan of Pesticide Action Network. “The plan will help ensure that bee-harming pesticides won’t be used unnecessarily,  and it lays the groundwork for reducing the use of neonicotinoid seed coatings. This decision is rooted in the resounding scientific evidence that neonicotinoids are harmful to pollinators. It’s past time for state and federal decisionmakers to take action to restrict the use of bee-harming pesticides, and today Minnesota did just that.”

Unfortunately, MDA’s restriction on neonicotinoids does not apply to all uses of the insecticides  in the state, thanks to a federal loophole that exempts seed coatings from being classified as a “pesticide application” by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). In his announcement today, Governor Dayton called on the state legislature to close the loophole on seed coatings by authorizing MDA to provide much-needed oversight. Nationwide, about 94 percent of corn seed, and 33-50 percent of soybean seed, is coated with neonicotinoids before being planted. Additionally, nearly all corn and about 20% of soy seeds are treated outside Minnesota and not tracked by the MDA, furthering pollinator decline. Though corn and soy are major Minnesota crops, neonicotinoid-coated seeds grown in the state will be excluded from the state’s new policies unless the legislature takes action. In January 2016, beekeepers, farmers and advocacy groups filed a lawsuit against EPA for failing to adequately oversee the widespread use of neonicotinoid seed coatings — the most common application of these bee-harming pesticides.


AMAZING GOOD  -POLLI*NATION Festival 

If you were lucky enough to spend the absolute most beautiful fall day on the farmy Stillwater festival grounds, you can relive a bit below.  If you were unlucky and missed Polli*NATION 2016....stay tuned for 2017!