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The Buzz About Bees
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Wednesday, March 22, 2023
 

BY KAREN BOSSICK

Learn about “The Amazing World of Native Bees” when educator/forester Linda Ries addresses the subject at 5:30 p.m. Thursday, March 23, at Hailey Town Center West.

Ries will teach attendees how to identify local bees, including bumble bees, mason bees and leaf cutter bees. She’ll discuss how the native bees differ from imported honeybees and she will talk about which bees pollinate local fruit trees and vegetables.

She’ll teach about bees’ life cycles and how they’re increasingly threatened by pesticides and poor cultural practices. And she’ll offer tips on how humans can help bees thrive and survive in the Wood River Valley.

Native bees are the primary pollinator or significant supplements to honey bees for agricultural crops,” said Kristin Fletcher, whose Hailey Public Library is co-sponsoring the talk with the Wood River Chapter of the Idaho Native Plant Society. “However, these fascinating creatures are in decline all over the United States as a result of loss of habitat, toxins and disease. The good news is that there’s much we can do to help them out.  But first we need to learn more about the unique natural history and lifestyle of the species who live here.”

Ries has a Bachelor of Science degree in Forest Biology from Colorado State University and worked for more than 20 years as a Forest Service forester and conservation educator.  She helped establish the Hailey Native Plant Arboretum in 1996 and has served on the City of Hailey Tree Committee since 2016.

She also was the Project Learning Tree coordinator for South Dakota and served as Blaine County 4-H leader for Entomology, Geology and Forestry. She had been a lover of insects since she was a child.


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