Pollinator-Friendly Best Management Practices for Federal Lands

Bumble bee foraging on goldenrod, Solidago sp.
Bumble bee foraging on goldenrod, Solidago sp.

On June 20, 2014, the White House released a “Presidential Memorandum—Creating a Federal Strategy To Promote the Health of Honey Bees and Other Pollinators” (PDF, 52 KB). The memo’s introduction states the following:

“Over the past few decades, there has been a significant loss of pollinators, including honey bees, native bees, birds, bats, and butterflies, from the environment. The problem is serious and requires immediate attention to ensure the sustainability of our food production systems, avoid additional economic impact on the agricultural sector, and protect the health of the environment.”

“Given the breadth, severity, and persistence of pollinator losses, it is critical to expand Federal efforts and take new steps to reverse pollinator losses and help restore populations to healthy levels.”


Sec. 3. Increasing and Improving Pollinator Habitat

(e) The Departments of Agriculture and the Interior shall… develop best management practices for executive departments and agencies to enhance pollinator habitat on Federal lands.”

A statement released by Bob Periciasepe, Deputy Administrator, Environmental Protection Agency, and Krysta Harden, Deputy Secretary, U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), emphasized:

“The memorandum also requires federal agencies to lead by example, taking specific measures to substantially expand pollinator habitat on federal lands and to build on feder­al efforts with public-private partnerships.”

With this direction, U.S. Department of Agriculture and U.S. Department of Interior, issue this timely and critically needed document, Pollinator-Friendly Best Management Practices For Federal Lands, May 11, 2015 (PDF, 5.1 MBs). This document will guide federal land managers to effectively and efficiently use available resources and engage public and private partnerships in taking action for the conservation and management of pollinators and pollinator habitat on federal lands.

National Strategy

National Strategy to Promote the Health of Honey Bees and Other Pollinators cover.

On May 19, 2015, the Secreatary of the Department of Agriculture and the Administrator, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, on the behalf of the Pollinator Health Task Force, transmitted the National Strategy to Promote the Health of Honey Bees and Other Pollinators (Strategy). Developed through a collaborative effort across the Executive Branch, this Strategy outlines a comprehensive approach to tackling and reducing the
impact of multiple stressors on pollinator health, including pests and pathogens, reduced habitat, lack of nutritional resources, and exposure to pesticides.