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Curt WohleberWriterUniversity of Missouri ExtensionPhone: 573-882-5409Email: WohleberC@missouri.edu
Photo available for this release:
Bumblebees are just one of many pollinator species that support Missouri's wildlife and agriculture.
Credit: Jerry A. Payne, USDA Agricultural Research Service, Bugwood.org
Published: Friday, June 8, 2012
Robert A. Pierce II, 573-882-4337Tim Reinbott, 573-884-7945
COLUMBIA, Mo. – If you still haven’t made plans for celebrating National Pollinator Week, June 18-24, you might want to mark your calendar and come out to the University of Missouri Bradford Research Center for a bobwhite quail/native pollinator field day, June 21, 1-7 p.m.
“Past bobwhite quail field days at Bradford have focused on management activities that landowners can use to enhance their property for quail and other wildlife, including the development of early-successional native plant communities that provide important food and cover. But another benefit of native flowering plants is their contribution to supporting more robust populations of native pollinators, including bumblebees, bees, wasps, hummingbirds, butterflies and numerous other species,” said Bob Pierce, MU Extension wildlife specialist.
In turn, native pollinators are invaluable to farmers and ranchers who grow crops and forages that depend on pollinators to produce optimum yields, Pierce said.
“The 2012 field day will provide a great venue for learning more about bobwhite quail as well as our important native pollinators and the habitats that they depend on for survival,” he said.
“Approximately 30 percent of our food and fiber crop production relies on pollinators for reproduction, and Missouri is no exception with our abundance of fruit and vegetable crops,” says Tim Reinbott, superintendent at Bradford Research Center.
Creating habitats for pollinators and wildlife will be the topic of the presentation by featured speaker Pete Berthelsen, senior field coordinator for Quail Forever and Pheasants Forever. The organization recently recognized MU Wildlife Extension and the Bradford Research Center with a Quail Forever Partnership Award for outstanding wildlife extension educational programming.
Berthelsen had a key role in making pollinators a part of federal conservation programs in the 2008 farm bill, providing incentives for farmers and ranchers to use land-management practices that create and conserve pollinator habitat. Following a proclamation by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, National Pollinator Week was first held in 2007 to increase awareness of the benefits pollinators provide to agriculture, native ecosystems and to society as a whole.
Native pollinators also will be featured in a walking tour on landscaping with native plants, led by Nadia Navarrete-Tindall, director of the Lincoln University Cooperative Extension native plants program.
Other tours will look at creating and managing field borders, which can provide economic benefits as well as benefits to wildlife and pollinators.
Participants will be able to see habitat-management techniques in use on private land during a tour of farmer George Hobson’s 100-acre property adjacent to Bradford.
Outdoor workshops will demonstrate the use of prescribed burning for habitat management; drill calibration for seeding; calibrating herbicide applications; and planting trees and shrubs.
Indoor sessions will provide a detailed look at managing bobwhite quail habitat, including discussions of habitat appraisals, predators, quail ecology and population dynamics, and conducting fall covey counts.
The event is free and reservations are not required. Drinks and hamburgers will be provided after the event to those who complete a brief evaluation form.
The MU Bradford Research Center is 6.5 miles east of Columbia at 4968 Rangeline Road. For directions and other information, go to aes.missouri.edu/bradford or call 573-884-7945.
Sponsors include the MU College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources; MU Extension; Lincoln University; the Missouri Department of Conservation; the Missouri Soybean Association; and the USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service.
For more information on pollinators and National Pollinator Week, see www.pollinator.org.
Pete Berthelsen showcases pollinator habitat in a short video at http://youtu.be/rynxd3abCnI.
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