TOE2 FUNDING THEME FOR 2016-2017 – BUMBLEBEES
Why should we help bumblebees?
Bumblebees are endearing and familiar insects; their animated behaviour and deep buzz as they fly from flower to flower makes them a delight to watch. But our bumblebees have been declining because changes in land management cultural practices have removed many flowers from the landscape, leaving bumblebees with little to feed upon. Most UK species have declined greatly in recent years, and two have become extinct in the UK since 1940.
We have 24 species of bumblebee in the UK, but only eight are found commonly. Bumblebees are found in a variety of habitats and most people should be able to attract them to their gardens or local public spaces if they have the right kinds of flowering plants. By using green spaces and also gardens more effectively, we hope that everyone can get involved in making the landscape friendlier to bumblebees and other invertebrates, helping to reverse the declines we have seen.
People can also get involved in survey work. By doing this, we can see what bumblebees are present around the country, and how their distributions change over time. By monitoring the species like this, we can detect warning signs and take action to help.
The aims of having a Bumblebee theme:
What sorts of projects can apply?
TOE2 has already supported a couple of bumblebee projects in the Chipping Norton area, which may provide ideas to potential applicants:
Here are a few other ideas for bumblebee projects:
All projects should try and ensure a long flowering period on their sites by using a range of species that flower at different times of year.
We would also like to see projects promoting what they are doing to engage more people with bumblebees and encourage more planting of nectar rich plants.
Important things to bear in mind
For further information
31 May 2016