650: Jennifer Foltz-Sweat on Urban Bee Communities.
Working Toward Bee Conservation and Biodiversity in Urban Areas.
In This Podcast:
Jennifer Foltz-Sweat opens our eyes to the wide world of bees. By now many of us have heard that bees are a crucial element of the environment, but what should we do with that knowledge? Jennifer explains easy things we can do to attract bees to our garden and warns us what not to do. She gives uplifting examples of how important education is to conservation, tells us about the move toward citizen science, and encourages all of us to get involved.
Jennifer Foltz-Sweat began researching wild bee ecology in 2002, while a graduate student in California. Her studies focused on determining how wild bee communities differed between grassland habitats and urban areas. She moved back to Arizona, where she grew up, in 2009 and began teaching at Arizona State University West campus and the Maricopa County Community College District. Jennifer continues to conduct research on urban bee communities with her undergraduate students. She is interested in measuring native bee foraging on urban flowering plants and characterizing urban bee communities.
Listen in and learn about:
- Jennifer’s original study subjects and why she shifted to studying bees
- Citizen science projects
- How to get involved in citizen science in your state
- Why wild bees are not used in agriculture
- Diverse types of bees
- Advantages of wild bees over honeybees
- Types of plants wild bees prefer
- Spring bees and fall bees
- Pollinator magnets
- Finding microbial communities in nectar
- What Jennifer loves about working with undergraduate students
- The importance of education in conservation
- Ways to conserve bees in urban habitats
- Things that discourage bees, and what encourages them
- Bee hotels have limited usefulness
- The lifecycle of bees
As well as:
Her failure – Using traps to collect bees when she was an undergraduate student
Her success – Her Course-based Research Experience for Undergraduates program
Her drive – “a passion for conservation”
Her advice – “Engage in citizen science!”
Jennifer’s Book recommendation:
How to reach Jennifer:
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