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Food for people and pollinators

Catherine Jones, Pollinator Officer, shares with us an update from Buglife and information about their forthcoming farmer survey.

Skylarks are singing above the fields, a sign that spring is here, and soon we will hear the buzzing of summer as bumblebees, butterflies and other pollinators forage for food amongst the wildflowers blooming across the countryside. Sadly, much of the wildflower-rich habitat that pollinators need from spring through until the autumn, has been lost or is fragmented in the managed rural landscape. Nature friendly farmers play an important role providing large areas of pollinator friendly habitat. Buglife’s B-Lines map (available from: https://www.buglife.org.uk/our-work/b-lines/) provides a tool for nature friendly farmers to target the creation of wildflower-rich habitat along corridors between existing habitat to make a better connected landscape for our declining pollinators.

Buglife, and many other conservation organisations are working with Defra, farmers, and other land managers, to design a new environmental land management scheme. We would like to understand how we can support farmers and land managers in a rural environment that provides food and shelter for pollinators, rewards farmers for producing food for people (and pollinators), and protects the countryside for future generations. Buglife is asking farmers and land managers to share their thoughts/opinions by completing a short online survey. The responses will be anonymised and the survey will be shared by the Nature Friendly Farming Network early in May. This is your chance to help shape the future for pollinators across the English countryside.

In these difficult times, farmers across the country continue to produce and deliver food for people and nature friendly farmers continue to protect the countryside for our wildlife. Thank you.

Images:

Buff-tailed bumblebee –  Roger Key

Orchard in Kent – Laurie Jackson