Enhancing Urban Pollinator and Beneficial Insect Habitat

Academic Year 
2014-2015
College/Department 
College of Liberal Arts & Sciences - Department of Geographical and Sustainability Sciences
Project Partner 
Led by 

Community interest in gardening, edible landscaping, and local food is growing. However, for reasons such as pesticide usage and habitat destruction, the pollinators and other beneficial insects that support such activities are declining. Since pollinators are essential for more than two-thirds of food production and other beneficial insects are integral to reducing the impact of pests on food plants, this has become a concern in the realm of urban agriculture. Students on this project researched bee diversity in Iowa City, compared it to bee diversity in prairie and agricultural settings, and related it to floral diversity in each setting. Students used pan trapping and sweep netting methods to collect bees during their research. Students offered recommendations to the City of Iowa City to help the area maintain and increase urban bee diversity.