Our gardens support over 115 species of insect pollinators.
To know which pollinators are using our gardens, TPI conducts biodiversity surveys. We observe flowers in gardens for ten minutes three times per week from May through October. Our surveys are non-lethal, meaning flower-visiting insects are identified in the garden without being collected and examined under a microscope. We want our gardens to be a safe space for pollinators!
Identifying pollinators to species without a physical specimen can be difficult, so we identify most flower visitors to genus. In some cases, species identification is possible because the pollinator is distinctive or flies at a time of year when confusing species are not active. In other cases, photographs can be identified by taxonomic experts on our iNaturalist project.
In 2020, our most frequently observed pollinators were native wasps and bees, but hover flies were also abundant at times. Our surveys in 2021 will provide more insight into how urban pollinator diversity and abundance vary across years.