On November 9 students from Southern Boone Elementary in Ashland joined researchers and other volunteers at Bradford Research Center for the planting of a new native pollinators plot. The site of about an acre sits near one of the ponds at the center and is in the process of being converted to a native prairie and attractant location for native insects. The plot also will provide cover and a food source for quail.
The students spent the afternoon learning about the natives of the seeds they were planting and how insects can help the ecosystem. They were tested in a plant identification quiz using visual clues, tried on a beekeeping suit, learned how certain colors of flowers attract insects and made a mud/seed ball to bring home.
The plot is part of a five-location project in which donations from Quail Forever, Missouri Department of Conservation and Sport Dog Brand have helped establish pollinator prairies and education to youth about the importance of native plants and wildlife. Seed donations came from Hamilton Native Outpost and Pure Air Natives.
More photos are available on our Flickr site at https://flic.kr/s/aHsk5shS7f.