MOV Climate Action collecting campaign signs to help honeybees

Published: Nov. 18, 2020 at 2:16 PM EST
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PARKERSBURG, W.Va. (WTAP) - Recently, Aaron Dunbar, a member of the Mid-Ohio Valley Climate Change leadership team, came across an article that discussed beekeepers using campaign yard signs to protect honeybees and provide warm housing for them during the winter. Dunbar brought up the subject with the organization, which is now collecting signs in Marietta and Parkersburg to donate to area beekeepers.

A local aviary contacted the organization and explained that they could make use of about 200 signs.

Those who would like to donate their signs can drop them off at the First Christian and Seventh-Day Adventist Churches in Parkersburg, or the First Unitarian Universalist Church in Marietta. They can also contact Eric Engle, chairman of Mid-Ohio Valley Climate Action, and arrange to drop signs off at his home.

Protecting honeybees is necessary because they are important pollinators, said Engle.

“Honeybees are, in particular, threatened on multiple fronts. Climate change has changed their range and the time of year that they can pollinate, and the different floral species that they can pollinate,” said Engle. “Also, being driven nearer to extinction due to agricultural pesticides and unfriendly development and agricultural pesticides that we really need to change with a bent toward sustainability. They’re obviously an enormous part of our food chain and some of our most important pollinators...We need to protect them as much as possible, and during the winter months we need to preserve their hives and keep them going and expand their numbers,” he added.

Engle had a number of suggestions for local residents who would like to take steps in their daily lives to help protect the honeybee population. First, he said that a typical home’s yard is what’s known as a monoculture, meaning it is composed of one type of crop, namely grass -- and that is not ideal for honeybees or other pollinators. Also, the ways in which we treat our lawns to keep them green can be detrimental to honeybees, as well. Engle suggested planting pollinator gardens rather than focusing on maintaining a typical grassy lawn, refraining from removing leaves from yards, and composting food waste.

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