Dear Decaturish – Decatur FIRST Lego League team studies decline of bees
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We are Talon United, a Decatur FIRST Lego League team. Our team is made up of fourth and fifth graders at F.AVE. As part of the team, we work on programming a robot and completing an innovation project (where we identified a problem in our community and propose a solution). We chose as our research project the decline of bees and what that means to us. We have been researching bees for a very long time.
We have been learning that bees are declining at a very fast rate. Beekeepers have lost approximately 30% of their honeybee hives every year since 2006. This is a really huge problem because 80% of all flowering plants, including fruits and vegetables, depend on bees for pollination. We depend on pollinators for every 1 out of every 3 bites of food we eat. Bees are one of the main pollinators so that means without bees more people would have less and less food each year.
To help address the problem of declining bees, we propose using public spaces and utility and transportation easements as pollinator pathways, a pathway that provides bee-friendly plants and nesting areas. These corridors would lead from one friendly pollinator garden to another. This is especially important for native bees who prefer to travel no more than 50 to 100 meters for food and nesting.
We also propose creating an online map that shows the gardens and pathways plus the places that could possibly be pollinator gardens. This map could help our community to identify public spaces and easements, like the area by the railroad tracks, as well as track private gardens as part of the pollinator pathway.
What can you do to help? Spreading the news, dedicating part of your yard to pollinator-friendly plants, and taking the Beecatur’s Pollinator Pledge (www.beecaturga.com). Together we can create Pollinator Pathways all over Decatur and make our neighborhoods more welcoming to our bee friends!
FIRST Lego League Team
Jacorey Dyer, Django Gaffney, Cullen Hill, Calvin King, Calla Lockwood,
Camila Mendez, Ben Powell, Liliana Quick, Ella Thompson, Charlie Thompson