TAGHKANIC—A recent survey by the state Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) and SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry shows that bees, butterflies, moths and other pollinators that populate the state’s woodlands and gardens are disappearing at a “catastrophic rate,” according to a release from the Town of Taghkanic Climate Smart Community Task Force. And the task force is offering to do something about the threat.
As a result of climate change, the invasion of nonnative species, and the loss of productive habitats, at least 38% of the state’s native pollinators—the insects that make local gardens bloom are at risk of elimination from the state’s ecosystem. In a worst-case scenario, up to 60% may be in danger of extinction.
But there are ways to help mitigate these losses including the way people manage their gardens and lawns.
In Columbia County local groups are forming to share information on how individual homeowners can implement small changes that, taken together, can achieve powerful results, the release says.
For example beginning in January the Climate Smart Task Force of the Town of Taghkanic will offer an ongoing series of films and lectures on this subject, with an eye to sharing information and opening a dialogue among local homeowners. Topics will include such things as protecting your plants from deer, rabbits, groundhogs and other nuisance animals; how to start a perennial flower garden; and programs on native and invasive insects and plants.
The first of these presentations is “Managing Your Land Sustainably: An Introduction to the Homegrown National Park” will take place at the Taghkanic Firehouse, Route 82, January 14 from 10 a.m. to noon and will be available on Zoom. The Zoom link can be found at http://www.taghkanic.org/.) Refreshments will be served.
Lives depend on a healthy and diverse insect population. It’s heartening to realize there are actions even a single person can take to provide a safe and nurturing place for the county’s butterflies, bees, and other essential pollinators.