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Connecting golf courses and pollinating insects

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    Friday, June 13, 2014, 10:43 AM -

    Pollinating insects are a vital part of the natural ecosystem. They are responsible for the successful pollination of a wide range of plants that provide essential food sources for birds and animals, as well as many other fruit, vegetable and oilseed food crops.

    Historically, the focus of most pollinator habitat efforts has been on agricultural or rural areas; and, while these remain critically important, increasingly, there is interest in and recognition of the role that more urban settings can play in contributing to healthy pollinator populations.

    Golf courses are one such example and provide great potential to create essential habitat and food sources for a range of native bees and other pollinating insects. Research has shown that creation of even small areas of dedicated habitat can significantly increase the numbers of pollinating insects.

    Transforming out-of-play areas on golf courses with wildflowers has the potential to not only provide colourful visual enhancement for golf courses, particularly with native species selected to fit into the local environment, but also provide a succession of flowering plants that delivers a continual supply of pollen and nectar for pollinators throughout the season.

    Areas of golf courses identified as having the greatest potential for pollinator habitats include deep rough, tee surrounds, the immediate carry areas off tees and around lakes and water features.

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