It’s National Pollinator Week, and here’s a neat site for you–a complete list, continuously updated, of crops of importance to humans that insects pollinate.
Some of the fruits and vegetables are obviously recognizable, and remember that clover and alfalfa are an important food crop for many of the animals we eat. There are also crops that produce a product that we use, like Neem or cotton. And, of premier importance to scientists everywhere: COFFEE and CHOCOLATE!
How much is all this worth?
Estimates vary, but the value is in the Billions. And that is just for bees–the estimates don’t include all the native pollinating insects, and other animal pollinators like birds and bats.
So thank a pollinator when you have lunch today, or get dressed this morning.
[And thanks to pouletsue for the photo of this bee on Aquilegia (Columbine). This bumblebee is actually cheating–she has chewed the spine of the flower and is drinking nectar from the side, rather than entering the flower. No pollination happening here, but the photo was so lovely, I couldn’t resist.]