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Kent County Council's Plan Bee hoping to save pollinators

PUBLISHED: 11:06 30 May 2019

Buff tailed bumble bee

Buff tailed bumble bee

Archant

Kent County Council has announced an action plan to save its local bee population.

As part of the council's "Plan Bee", there will be a review on the use of pesticides, grass-cutting schedules and opportunities to "green" buildings to be more pollinator friendly.

KCC will also encourage communities to introduce pollinator habitats and educate people on the importance of these tiny residents.

The council has run two school competitions and held three summits for parks and owners of railways, canals and rivers to encourage more pollinator-friendly activities.

Cllr Sarah Hamilton (Con) said: "This is probably one of the most important pieces of work we could ever be doing.

"We sometimes forget nature is a whole complex system from the microbes in the soil to the highest mammals.

"The whole interaction is absolutely vital to our survival.

"Other the years it's just crept in that things have happened which haven't been noticed."

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Cllr Seán Holden (Con), who chaired the group behind the plan, outlined their ideas at environment and transport cabinet committee.

He told the committee he got involved in the project after hearing a third of bees had died in 2013 due to poor weather conditions.

He said: "The idea behind this is showing the people of Kent that maybe they can do something about it.

"We need to mobilise the whole population of Kent in their homes, workplaces in farms or their schools, when they are developing housing developments.

"Whatever they are doing, they can do something from having a window box to having major plantings of forage."

While the action plan is called "Plan Bee" he added they are merely the "pin-up girls" and all pollinators are vital for the food chain.

He said: "We have to learn to love insects, which perhaps we don't love including male mosquitoes.

"Not all mosquitoes bite. The males are pollinators and feed on nectar."

Kent's Plan Bee is set to be finalised at the next full council meeting.

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