Happy National Pollinator Week

By Eugene Kutz, MNA Intern

This year, the Michigan Nature Association is recognizing one decade of National Pollinator Week, put into place by the U.S. Senate to recognize the critical role pollinators have in ecosystem health and agriculture, and to recognize “the value of partnership efforts to increase awareness about pollinators and support for protecting and sustaining pollinators.”

pollinator weekThe U.S. Department of Agriculture and the U.S. Department of the Interior have designated June 19-25 as National Pollinator Week in 2017 ─ a statement on how critical pollinators are to food production and ecosystems.

National Pollinator Week is a time to share the news about the need for healthy pollinator populations (bees, birds, butterflies, bats and beetles) and what can be done to protect them. This important awareness week addresses the devastating effects that declining pollinator populations will continue to have on agriculture and ecosystems that we all rely on.

The National Pollinator Week is now celebrated and recognized by countries across the globe, where many are celebrating healthy ecosystems and the services provided by pollinators and their positive effect on all of our lives, from supporting wildlife to keeping watersheds healthy.

For more information, visit The Pollinator Partnership, the largest non-profit dedicated exclusively to promoting the health of pollinators through conservation, education, and research.

To see a list of events taking place in Michigan this week, check out http://www.pollinator.org/pollinatorweek/events#Michigan:

Michigan BeePalooza 2017 bumble
6/18/2017, 1:00 PM
1066 Bogue Street East Lansing, 48824
“A fun afternoon event on Father’s Day at the MSU Demonstration Gardens in East Lansing, with interactive educational displays about the Bees of Michigan, beekeeping, bee conservation for homeowners, bumble bee ecology, face painting, and more!”
https://www.facebook.com/events/712867558881877 ; http://www.beepalooza.org

Pollinator Day 2017
6/24/2017, 12:00 PM
34051 Ryan Road, Sterling Heights, 48310
“Eckert’s Greenhouse is hosting an Annual Pollinator Day! Go to three different stations to learn about the importance of Butterflies, Bees, Birds and Bats! Let us help you make a friendly pollinator garden from our wide variety of annuals and perennials.” http://www.eckertsgreenhouse.com/specials–events.html

Free Seminar: Create A Garden To Attract Pollinators
6/24/2017, 10:00 AM
English Gardens, West Bloomfield, 48322
“Our experts will share tips on creating a garden that pollinators will love to call home.” http://www.englishgardens.com/events/create-a-garden-to-attract-pollinators/
Contact information: ewinger@englishgardens.com

Stewardship Workday At Bluffs Nature Area
6/24/2017 9:00 AM
222 Sunset Rd, Ann Arbor, 48103
“Bluffs Nature Area offers trails for bikers, walkers and runners along with interesting views of the river and a small hidden prairie. Volunteers are needed to pull invasive plants that provide little food for wildlife and crowd out native wildflowers.”
www.a2gov.org/NAP; 734.794.6627; NAP@a2gov.org

For a complete look at all National Pollinator Week events in the U.S. this week take a look at this map: http://pollinator.org/npw_events.htm.



MNA Supports Brenda’s Butterfly Habitat With a $500 Grant

By Chelsea Richardson

Brenda's Butterfly Habitat

Photo courtesy of Brenda’s Butterfly Habitat

Brenda Dziedzic has been a nature lover all her life. After over 28 years working for AT&T, butterflies were all she could think about.

In 2001, Brenda wanted to see butterflies again like she did when she was little, so she created a butterfly garden. She also wrote a self-published book “Butterflies in the Garden.”

Brenda’s Butterfly Habitat in Westland, Mich. is a butterfly haven.  While other places, like zoos, have exotic butterflies, Brenda’s Butterfly Habitat is full of native Michigan species.

She spent over $20,000 of her own money to create her beautiful butterfly house that starting out had nine types of butterflies and one moth.

As of June 1, she had over 70 butterflies in the structure. Now anyone who visits can see the entire butterfly life cycle. While the majority of caterpillars roam throughout the house, Brenda has a number of showcases that have caterpillars with their host plant so you can see them up close.

This spring was the release of the first batch of butterflies from the house.

Brenda wants to educate people about butterflies and how important they are to the ecosystem. She also wants to encourage people to plant flowers that will attract butterflies so that the species will continue to thrive.

Brenda says that she will give away caterpillars when she has an excess of them to those who have the right host plants.

It takes a lot of work to raise butterflies, but Brenda has the passion for it. The Michigan Nature Association has noticed that passion. MNA has made a $500 grant to Brenda so that she can continue her hard work in the protection of Michigan butterflies and educating the public about them.

Brenda said, “What a cool thing to do in retirement, right?”

We would have to agree with you, Brenda. For more information on Brenda’s Butterfly Habitat, visit Brenda’s website and Facebook page and check out a recent Detroit Free Press article on Brenda’s work.