“Bee Apidae,” a painting by Lena Connolly. IMAGE COURTESY OF COLLEGE OF THE ATLANTIC

Bee habitat workshop planned

MOUNT DESERT — Pollination expert Eric Venturini will lead a workshop on enhancing native bee habitat at Beech Hill Farm on Tuesday, May 23, from 4-6 p.m. as part of College of the Atlantic’s Food and Farming Workshop Series.

Maine is home to more than 270 native bee species, many of which provide vital pollination for fruit and vegetable production.

The workshop will cover the role of native bees in crop pollination, the current “pollination crisis” and strategies for managing habitat for improved pollination. Participants will get the chance to net bees and learn about their life-history and life-cycles. If apples are still in bloom, participants will learn about the impacts of diversity on pollination by capturing bees on apple blossoms and calculating the relative abundance of wild bees versus honey bees. The workshop will end with a pollinator habitat management walk in which participants will learn how to survey a site to assess bee habitat in order to inform planting design.

Venturini will be assisted by Professor Kourtney Collum and students from COA’s Bees & Society class. This workshop is ideal for farmers and gardeners who are interested in enhancing pollinator habitat in and around their landscape.

To register for this event, email Chase Uy at [email protected].

For students in need of transportation, a van will leave from the Whale Skull promptly at 3:30 p.m. There are only 12 seats in the van, including the driver, so note in your email if you would like to reserve a seat.

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