Opportunities and threats for pollinator conservation in global towns and cities

April 2020: With increasing concerns over a decrease in the number of pollinating insects (see BBC article here), and at least one London local authority looking at developing a ‘pollinator action plan’ (Waltham Forest – see outline and recent consultation paper here), this academic research, published in Current Opinion in Insect Science Volume 38, April 2020,paper provides some useful findings. Open access paper here.

“Urban expansion is considered to be one of the main threats to global biodiversity yet some pollinator groups, particularly bees, can do well in urban areas. Recent studies indicate that both local and landscape-level drivers can influence urban pollinator communities, with local floral resources and the amount of impervious cover in the landscape affecting pollinator abundance, richness and community composition. Urban intensification, chemicals, climate change and increased honey bee colony densities all negatively affect urban pollinators. Maintaining good areas of habitat for pollinators, such as those found in allotments (community gardens) and domestic gardens, and improving management approaches in urban greenspace and highly urbanised areas (e.g. by increasing floral resources and nesting sites) will benefit pollinator conservation.”

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