Pollinator Week Activities at USDA Headquarters! -Washington, D.C.

Below is an announcement from a listserv I subscribe to about activities going on in D.C. tomorrow in honor of National Pollinator Week! If you’re in the area, check it out!

It’s National Pollinator Week! Bee with us tomorrow (Rain or Shine!) for a fun-filled day to celebrate the hardest working friends of farmers and consumers at the eighth annual Pollinator Week Festival on Friday, June 23 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. outside USDA Headquarters in Washington, D.C.!

Special highlights include:

  • See live bats from around the world, including local insect-eating bats, leaf-nosed bats from South America and giant flying fox bats from Africa and Asia. Learn how bats are very important to ecosystems by eating pesky insects and spreading seeds or pollinating flowers of plants like mango, banana and pineapple.
  • Meet beekeepers from USDA-ARS Bee Research Laboratory and watch honey bees at work in an observation hive. Learn about pollinated foods like raspberries and taste honey from local hives including the People’s Garden Apiary, US National Arboretum, DC Water, and Bee Research Lab at VegU in the USDA Farmers Market.
  • Explore the People’s Garden to collect and identify insectsTake home pollinator-friendly plants like milkweed, oregano or bee balm to plant for pollinators.
  • Enjoy Free Häagen-Dazs Ice Cream! Honey bees pollinate many of the ingredients used to make ice creams and sorbets. To spread their love for honey bees Nestlé Dreyer’s Ice Cream is donating free cups of Strawberry Ice Cream and Pineapple Coconut Ice Cream – both bee-dependent flavors – to festival and bat walk attendees. Supplies are limited.
  • Shop the USDA Farmers Market during the day (9 a.m. – 2 p.m.) and in the evening (4 p.m. – 8 p.m.). Signs will highlight which food we’d be without if not for the hard work of honey bees, birds, butterflies, bats and other pollinators.
  • Walk with Bats! Meet at 8 p.m. at the corner of 12th Street and Jefferson Drive, SW in Washington, D.C. to attend a special “bat walk”! The walk discusses local DC bats, how they navigate the night skies, avoid predators and catch insects. Also, test out electronic bat detectors that pick up the ultrasonic calls that bats emit to navigate the darkness.

Exhibitors include:

USDA Agencies and Initiatives

Agricultural Marketing Service

Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service

Beltsville Agricultural Research Center Bee Research Laboratory

Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion

Farm Service Agency

Natural Resources Conservation Service

The People’s Garden

U.S. Forest Service

 

Other Federal and State Departments

DC Water

Department of Energy and the Environment

Smithsonian Natural Museum of Natural History

United States Environmental Protection Agency

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

 

Partners

Million Pollinator Garden Challenge

National Honey Board

National Wildlife Federation

Organization for Bat Conservation

Pollinator Partnership

University of Maryland Extension

 

The Pollinator Festival is free, fun and educational for both youth and adults. For more information follow @PeoplesGarden on Twitter. Sign language interpreters will be present all day in the yellow information tent in the USDA Farmers Market.

Featured image of Hylaeus bee taken by:
By Orangeaurochs from Sandy, Bedfordshire, United Kingdom – Solitary bee (Hylaeus?), Sandy, Bedfordshire, CC BY 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=48913743

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