Pollinator Operation: Design of Multifunctional Areas of Natural Vegetation
Scientific research and good practices
States of Puebla and Jalisco, Mexico
Corn, beans, blueberries, raspberries, and blackberries
September - December 2019
Producers associated with the National Association of Conservation Agriculture in Puebla and berry producers in the area of Ciudad Guzmán
About the project
The international scientific community has been warning of a severe decline in pollinator populations, especially of bees, with potentially disastrous consequences for agriculture and food production. Pollinators have been affected by a series of complex factors including pathogens, nutritional problems, climate change, and misuse of crop protection products.
A change in agricultural practices can benefit pollinators directly. For example, conserve or create patches of natural vegetation, plant strips of wildflowers near pollinator-dependent crops and apply good IPM (Integrated Pest Management) practices can decrease the pressure that habitat loss, climate change, and pesticide use are exerting on the populations of pollinators and other beneficial insects for agriculture.
Within this framework, "Operation Pollinator" is a project designed to evaluate the diversity of native plants and the beneficial insects associated with proposing a comprehensive design of multifunctional areas of natural vegetation (ZMVN) on berry and corn farms. Mexico.
With the support of a Costa Rican entomologist and his partner ABC Mexico, the SAN team will carry out monitoring activities of natural vegetation and beneficial insects in cranberry, raspberry and blackberry farms in Jalisco and corn and beans in Puebla. Also, the project includes a general description of farm management concerning practices that currently favor local biodiversity.
The results of these activities will lead to proposals for the integral design of multi-functional areas to benefit pollinators, beneficial insects, and local producers with the contribution of their integrated pest management.
By the end of the project, a characterization of biodiversity conservation practices on berry and corn farms will be completed, as well as two catalogs of the natural vegetation of the farms and a list of pollinators and beneficial insects of importance for these crops.
The project will include detailed recommendations on the characteristics of multi-functional areas of natural vegetation, a package of good practices to favor biodiversity, and a protocol on how to reproduce and plant beneficial insect host plants in the most practical way.
Multi-functional areas of natural vegetation will be planted during 2020 and will host and attract beneficial insects to maintain or increase their populations and stabilize local agroecosystems, in general.