The Research Triangle Park

Pollinator Week: What’s the Big Deal?

By Jun 29, 2016

The Research Triangle Park has a long-standing commitment to sustainability. RTP features world-leading science and technology companies, and many of them are working to ensure a better, more sustainable future. Preserving pollinators is an important step in creating a sustainable future. There are a variety of pollinators that are essential to the production of our fruits and vegetables. Pollination is an “ecosystem service”, which means it is something the ecosystem does without prompting to improve our planet and human health. Without pollinators, we would have to pollinate our produce manually, which would cost an enormous amount of time and money. 

For Pollinator Week 2016, we wanted to celebrate and raise awareness of our awesome pollinators, so we invited a variety of participants to come to events around RTP. At RTP Headquarters, we hosted an event called “Birds, Butterflies, Bees, and Blooms,” featuring a variety of experts in ecology. We also partnered with the Triangle Land Conservancy to host “Wild Ideas for Birds and Bees” at The Frontier.  We posed the following question to some of the presenters: “What should people take away from today?” Here are their answers:

RTP_Foundation_Lisa_Jemison

“Research Triangle Park is a leader in corporate sustainability. We’re bringing companies together to protect pollinators in our state.” Lisa Jemison of the Research Triangle Foundation

Wildlife_Habitat_Council_Sara_Barnas

“Conservation doesn’t need to be daunting; work with local partners, start small and grow into your program.” Sara Barnas and Robert Campbell of the Wildlife Habitat Council

Bee_Downtown_Leigh_Kathryn_Bonner_Justin_Maness

“The Triangle is full of UN-BEE-LIEVABLE groups & organizations that love our pollinators! #SaveTheBees” Leigh Kathryn Bonner and Justin Maness of Bee Downtown

Brian_Doherty_US_Forest_Service_Southern_Research_Station

“Pollinators play an integral role in our lives, balancing the ecosystem. Making small changes in your yard can make a big difference in our pollinator habitats.” Brian Doherty of the US Forest Service Southern Research Station

Master Gardeners

“We can ALL plant for pollinators.” Deborah Pilkington and Tina Falker of Durham Extension Master Gardeners

NC_Museum_of_Natural_Sciences_Chris_Goforth

“There are many simple ways you can help scientists learn more about & help conserve pollinators as a citizen scientist!” Chris Goforth of the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences

RTP_Foundation_Nicole_Taylor

“Without pollinators we wouldn’t have CHOCOLATE!” Nicole Taylor of the Research Triangle Foundation

The_Xerces_Society_Nancy_Lee_Adamson

“Plant native plants, as many different kinds as possible to help support the approximately 500 bees native to North Carolina, and lots of butterflies & other wildlife.” Nancy Lee Adamson of the Xerces Society

US_Fish_and_Wilflife_Service_Laura_Fogo (2)

“Nationwide pollinators are in decline because of habitat loss. So we need to restore habitat for all pollinators by increasing native plant diversity. Plant natives & milkweed- a must for monarch butterflies. Plant pollinators gardens.” Laura Fogo of the US Fish and Wildlife Service

"Helping pollinators is fun and its easier than you think!" Nell Allen of the North Carolina Zoo

“Helping pollinators is fun and its easier than you think!” Nell Allen of the North Carolina Zoo

NC_State_Clyde_Sorenson

“Native bees are CRITICALLY IMPORTANT and they LOVE diversity!” Clyde Sorenson of North Carolina State University

"Native bees ARE diverse (528 kinds in North Carolina)" Elsa Youngsteadt of North Carolina State University

“Native bees ARE diverse (528 kinds in North Carolina)” Elsa Youngsteadt of North Carolina State University

Did you know that RTP has a committee dedicated to protecting the environment? [email protected] is a group of people from around RTP who share a commitment to sustainability. Join today!

Want to learn more about pollinators, specifically bees? Check out this blog we recently published, which breaks things down into simple terms.

Thank you to all who participated!