Bees and other insect pollinators are major contributors to UK crop agriculture and to our landscape. Despite their importance, pollinator populations are threatened by many modern land management and agricultural practices. This raises questions about how secure pollination ‘services’ may be to future changes: Will we have enough pollinators where we need them? Will populations be able to withstand changes to the way we manage land? What might be the implications, both in financially (food costs) and socially, if we get it wrong? The UKRI funded Resilient Pollinators project brought together a team of researchers and stakeholders from across the scientific spectrum to address these issues. By using the best available data and new modelling methods, the project modelled how stable populations of pollinating insects are across the UK. The project also engaged in ground-breaking social science to explore how changes to the landscape that can have an impact on pollinating insects, such as reducing the availability of flowers and hedges can affect the way we value the landscape from a personal and cultural perspective.
Resiliant Pollinators was a collaboration between the University of Reading, University of Huddersfield, University of Northampton, Lund University (Sweden), The Bees, Ants and Wasps Recording Society, the Hoverfly Recording Scheme, Natural Capital Solutions, the National Farmers Union, DEFRA and Natural England. The project was funded as part of the UKRI Global Food Security Programme.