Urban bees, and a new DEFRA initiative

Next Tuesday (22nd July), Oxford radio station Destiny 105fm is doing an interview with local environmental scientist Katherine Harborne about urban beekeeping, and what non beekeepers can do to help pollinators. I believe this will be up to 15 minutes’ of discussion, broadcast between 7pm to 9pm. Katherine gave a talk to Oxford residents on this theme earlier this year at an open public meeting she organised.

Another incremental development on UK government (DEFRA) policy: they have launched a “bees’ needs” campaign to help pollinators. It is aimed at the general public.

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One Response to Urban bees, and a new DEFRA initiative

  1. itsonlyausername says:

    But the Government still want neonics and the Pollinator Strategy document is full of the same old same old. Leave it to the members of the public to help the ailing bee population. I know because I attended the APPG Agroecology meeting in Parliament earlier this year to hear what this strategy document was going to achieve. Allegedly!
    Essentially nothing. No new research. No new legislation to protect valuable pollinator habitats. No new set-aside land policy within CAP. No new money from anywhere to fund habitat creation.
    Oddly enough the people who reviewed this document were scientists involved with researching why the pollinators had been in decline. What they saw was a real need to create variable and diverse habitats across the UK and to stop using toxic chemicals. The Precautionary Principle needed to be applied to the letter to prevent further declines. What was on offer was something altogether different to what was needed.
    Add to the never ending pollinator decline, the knock on effect of less insects which = less insect eating birds and you can almost see where its going. Research earlier last week highlighted this issue. But its not just the birds that will suffer. Amphibians which are one of our most vulnerable class of species are in serious trouble and the fish will also suffer.
    As for the governments ambitions on pollinator declines? Well like I said at the beginning its being left to us citizens to keep on doing what we have been doing without any help from government or DEFRA or any additional help by way of funding. What is that exactly you may ask?
    Keep planting flowers in your gardens and encourage your neighbours to do likewise. Donate to worthwhile Bee and Bumblebee charities and keep on keeping on!
    Not exactly very bee friendly. Not exactly worth the tens of thousands if not hundreds of thousands of pounds spent developing this strategy document and delivering it for consultation.
    The money would have gone a long way towards generating a sensible solution I am sure.
    All window dressing and empty shelves.


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