03-17-23 | News

March 23rd Webinar with Ernst Conservation Seeds, Mark Fiely

Dietary Needs of Pollinators and Other Beneficial Insects
by Staff

Register today for March 23rd live webinar with Ernst Conservation Seeds', Mark Fiely. Learn about the process of pollination and the dietary needs of juvenile and adult bees, butterflies, and other beneficial insects.

Webinar Description:
Native insects have co-evolved with native plants that underpin their habitat. In a natural landscape the dietary needs of beneficial insects, such as pollinators and parasitoid/parasitic insects are met in whole or part by native plants. For example, monarch butterflies are nectar generalists that feed on nectar from both native and non-native species while their caterpillars are plant specialists that must feed on native milkweed species. As a second example, larvae of each bee species must be fed with a diet that includes pollen with a particular protein to lipid ratio. Each species of plant produces pollen with a unique protein to lipid ratio. In a diverse landscape native bees will collect pollen from a combination of species that provides the correct protein to lipid ratios. Finally, differences in floral structure arrangement and corolla size favor different pollinator species. By planting diverse meadows, we can support a broad array of pollinators.

Learning Objectives:

1. Understand insect pollination is accomplished by bee and non-bee species.
2. Understand native bees do not have identical windows of activity.
3. Increase understanding of the dietary needs of juvenile and adult bees, butterflies, and other beneficial insects.
4. Increase understanding of the plants that support bees, butterflies, and beneficial insects.

Mark Fiely
Since 1995 Mark B. Fiely has been a horticulturist for Ernst Conservation Seeds. He holds a B.S. and an M.S. in horticulture from Penn State and the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, respectively. He is a member of Ernst's executive board and serves on their marketing, planting, seed processing, harvest, and pricing committees. Among his responsibilities are plant prospecting, development of seed dormancy breaking protocols, formulation of seed mixes and attendance of trade shows. He serves as a member of the Penn State Center for Pollinator Research Stakeholder Advisory Board, the Pennsylvania Pollinator Protection Plan Working Group, and the Pennsylvania Lawns to Meadows Conversion Committee. Mr. Fiely is a co-author of two refereed publications.

Credits: LACES 1, APLD 1, PGMS 1, NALP 1

March 23rd at 11am PDT


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