A Dutch citizen science project reveals that the decline of pollinators in cities in the Netherlands has been halted, reports the Guardian. The country’s native wild bee population had been in decine since the 1940s.
As part of a national bee census, 11,000 volunteers each spent 30 minutes in their gardens recording bees and hoverflies. An average of 18 to 20 of the creatures was found in each garden.
The honeybee was the most seen pollinator, with 55,000 sightings. The red mason bee and the earth bumblebee were second and third, with 13,000 and 12,800 records.
Many Dutch agricultural areas are worked more intensively than before, and wild flowers have disappeared. In 2018, a national pollinator strategy was announced. This includes putting up ‘bee hotels’, replacing grass in public spaces with flowering plants, and stopping the use of chemical weed killers on public land.
Utrecht has been building bee stops – bus stops with their roofs covered in native plants.
The measures seem to be working.