Please invest in Our Daily Planet today, by making a one time or monthly contribution.
We do not charge our readers a subscription fee for our content. We want to continue to grow our readership, particularly among millennials and public servants. Voluntary contributions from readers will help us employ interns and freelance journalists, expand our content, and reach a larger audience.
Kate Tweedy of Little St. Simons Island conducting a BAFA training for partners and citizen scientists. Image: St. Simons Land Trust
Pollinators are facing stresses all over the world such as habitat loss, degradation, and fragmentation. In the state of Georgia specifically, where experts determined that the annual value of pollination is over $360 million, Butterflies of the Atlantic Flyway Alliance (BAFA) was formed to bring together conservation land managers and citizen scientists throughout the state to collect data on pollinators. Through five years of surveys in the Coastal Georgia counties, BAFA will gather the information necessary to create land management recommendations for property owners and managers. Collected data will include migratory movement and nectar and host plant utilization.
Additionally, this year, environmental groups and citizen scientists are taking the health of pollinators across all of Georgia into their own hands by conducting the first-ever statewide pollinator census which will create a count of the bees and butterflies that land on flowers in yards, parks and at schools.
The Impact: Species like the Palamedes swallowtail butterfly depend on the red bay tree that’s found in the maritime forest of Georgia. Unfortunately, the red bay tree population has dropped significantly since 2002 thanks to an invasive ambrosia beetle which bores into the tree, leaving behind a fungus causing the tree to die back. The tree will continue to sprout, but will never reach its full size again. BAFA partner, Cannon’s Point Preserve on St. Simons Island, is working to better study its native population of red bay trees and ensure that it stays healthy for the Palamedes swallowtail to reproduce.”
Palamedes swallowtail butterfly. Image: Stephanie Knox, Preserve Manager at Cannon’s Point Preserve at St. Simons Land Trust
Why This Matters:Nearly all of the data collected through the initiative is accomplished by citizen scientists, people from the local community who joined BAFA to learn more about their local pollinators and to help ensure butterflies have a bright future in coastal Georgia. Through data collection, public engagement, and future land management recommendations, BAFA aims to safeguard sustainable butterfly populations. Plus, through a network of citizen scientists, the importance of conservation is instilled in communities and also passed on to younger generations. For small species like pollinators, they often need the help of the people in their communities to ensure their health and survival–so become a citizen scientist in your own community!
by Ashira Morris, ODP Staff Writer As the world warms, it’s not just people who are feeling the heat. Bats are also susceptible to extreme heat, and overheated bat boxes can be “a death trap,” the Guardian reports. In the wild, bats move between rock and tree crevices in search of a perfectly moderated temperature. […]
by Natasha Lasky, ODP Staff Writer A new report entitled The World’s Forgotten Fishes from the World Wildlife Fund has found that there has been a “catastrophic” decline in freshwater fish, with nearly a third of all freshwater fish species coming perilously close to extinction. The statistics paint a sobering picture: 26% of all critically […]
by Amy Lupica, ODP Staff Writer Move over Dolly, there’s a new clone in town and her name is Elizabeth Ann the Black-Footed ferret. You read that right; the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) announced on Thursday that it had successfully cloned the first U.S. endangered species. Elizabeth Ann was born on December 10, […]
Our Daily Planet is your daily dose of the stories shaping our world and the ways that you can take action. From the climate crisis to the protection of biodiversity, if these issues matter to you then please subscribe & stay informed!
Your privacy is Important! We promise never to use your email address to send you spam or advertisements.