The Powerful Partnership – Plants and Pollinators

Michigan plants are pollinated by over 450 species of native bees, as well as flies, butterflies, wasps, honeybees, and other insects. These pollinators have important roles in our ecosystem – supporting both native plants and food crops. This talk covers the types of pollinators found in the great lake region and their roles and importance. We will identify common types of bees, and how they are used in Agriculture and native ecosystems. We will discuss the current issues regarding pollinators, including population levels and the things that affect them – land use changes, pesticides, and new diseases. We will conclude with ways that individuals can work and make changes to protect pollinator health.

Subject Matter Level: 
Friday, January 15, 2016 - 10:45am to 11:40am
Meghan Milbrath
Michigan Pollinator Initiative, Michigan State University
Dr. Meghan Milbrath is the coordinator of the Michigan Pollinator Initiative at Michigan State University, a program focused on pollinators and the plants that depend on them. She recently worked at MSU as a postdoctoral research associate in the Entomology Department, studying honey bee diseases. Meghan has been a beekeeper for over 20 years, and owns and manages Bending Sickle Community Farm, a small livestock and queen bee rearing operation in Munith, Michigan. Meghan teaches multiple beekeeping classes; queen rearing courses at Michigan State University; and runs clinics and beekeeping consulting through her apiary. She is the district 2 representative for the Michigan Beekeeping Association, the acting president of the Ann Arbor Backyard Beekeepers, an active member in the South East Michigan Beekeeping Association and the Center of Michigan Beekeeping Association, and the coordinator of the Northern Bee Network, an organization dedicated to promoting sustainable beekeeping in northern climates.
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