(November, 2014) Listen and watch Dr. Mary Harris describe her research on pollinators and prairie strips in this Iowa Learning Farms webinar. This webinar was first delivered on November 19th. Read more about Iowa Learning Farms Webinar Featuring Pollinators and Prairie Strips
How will butterflies and bees find the prairie strips? Will they die when they get to the strips? Will treated seed kill the wildlife in the strips?
Butterflies and bees are attracted to the colors and scents of flowers within the strips. Flying above the crop pollinators will be able to locate the strips using these cues.
Will prairie strips help pollinators?
Prairie strips provide both abundant and diverse flowering plants to agricultural landscapes, which are essential for supporting honey bees and conserving wild bees and butterflies. Flowers provide critical food resources for these insects: nectar for adult bees and butterflies, and pollen for the young bees. Furthermore, a growing body of scientific literature indicates that bee health is improved when they are provided a diverse diet of plants.
The USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA) is contracting with the STRIPS team to evaluate the performance of prairie strips in comparison to traditional filter and buffer strip implementations supported by the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP). This page explains this evaluation effort. Read more about USDA Farm Service Agency Supports Evaluation of Prairie Strips