• Annemarie Taylor

Get buzzing – send in a Pollinator Pledge to support our pollinators

This year’s Kurrajong-a-Buzz event which celebrates everything pollination is encouraging Pollinator Pledges instead of having a major event which in the past few years has pulled in as many as 1000 visitors.

Australian Pollinator Week runs from November 5-18 and is a week when community, business and organisations can come together to raise awareness of the importance of pollinators.

The change to a virtual Pollinator Week rather than physical events is due to the Covid pandemic which has made it too difficult to hold an open event such as the one Kurrajong-a-Buzz last held in Kurrajong’s Memorial Park.

Kurrajong-a-Buzz promotes, “all things pollinators (you know bees, and all the other wonderful pollinators)”, they say, and is organised by Kurrajong Community Forum.

“The community response to the Kurrajong-a-Buzz events in past years has been so positive. This Australian Pollinator Week the Kurrajong Community Forum wanted to highlight the importance of pollinators through pledges made by Hawkesbury residents and students. We are already receiving some very thoughtful and encouraging responses,” said Elizabeth Docking who came up with the original concept for the Kurrajong community pollinator event.

It's not just bees - butterflies are also pollinators

Pollinator Pledges can come in any form, including videos reminding people to avoid herbicides and pesticides in their gardens so bees and other pollinators can work without getting sick, and the importance of leaving water out for pollinators.

Hawkesbury school students, classes and the Hawkesbury community are invited to share their pledge to support our important pollinators in 30 words or make a 30 second video. Students also have the option to take a photograph of a poster that tells the story of their pollinator pledge. Details about entering are available on the Kurrajong-a-Buzz Facebook page.

As an incentive to share a pledge, great prizes are on offer for both adults and students, including gift vouchers for use in Kurrajong village businesses. Students who enter early can win for their class a Wild Pollinator Count experience with scientists from Hawkesbury Institute for the Environment.

The major prize for students is a lesson for 25 students or less at the Blue Mountains Botanic Gardens Mount Tomah, and a half-day pollinator workshop for 25 students from the Centre of Excellence in Agricultural Education at the Western Sydney University’s Hawkesbury Campus in Richmond.

Don't use pesticides and herbicides - they can kill pollinators

The community are encouraged to vote for their favourite entries, with People’s Choice prizes for adults and children, based on the number of likes received.

Ms Docking said it was important to remember pollinator week was not just about honey bees, it was also about native bees, as well as the importance of bats, butterflies and birds in pollination.

She said it was important to remember that pesticides and herbicides were both detrimental to pollinators. Avoiding their use would help encourage pollinators onto properties and make it safer for them to go about their vital work, she said.

“Our decisions and actions can assist native pollinators and our precious forests, like planting habitat corridors using native ground covers, trees and shrubs,” Ms Docking said.

So get a buzz on and get your pollinator pledges in now.

Send entries via Facebook Messenger to the Kurrajong-a-Buzz Facebook page. Include your name, contact number and suburb. Or send entries to lynward486@yahoo.com.au by November 15.

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