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Our Work
Impact Area


Conserving habitats that support Canada’s pollinator species

Pollinators are important and they need our help.


Pollinators like bees, butterflies, beetles, wasps, birds and moths perform important duties throughout the different stages of their lives. They can be food for other animals and help create food for us.

But pollinators are running out of the habitats that are critical to their survival. Research shows that healthy landscapes that host mixed natural areas, including grasslands, wetlands, shelter belt areas and ditch vegetation, aid in increasing biodiversity. Natural areas also provide shelter for pollinators and other beneficial insects.

These same landscapes provide wildlife habitat, store carbon, support large animal grazing, support healthy soils, reduce flooding, and offer medicines and foods.

bumblebee pollinating a flower
Frequently Asked Questions about Wild Pollinators

Frequently Asked Questions about Wild Pollinators

Native bee species, or wild bees, need our help. They are an important element of our natural ecosystems, and support food production too.

What is a grassland?

What is a grassland?

The most endangered terrestrial ecosystem is found right here in Canada: temperate grasslands.

What is a wetland?

What is a wetland?

Canada’s wetlands are diverse, taking the form of marshes, bogs, fens, swamps & open water. Wetlands benefit waterfowl, wildlife & people.

Our agriculture programs and services

Our agriculture programs and services

From delivering on-farm programs to consulting with one of our conservation specialists, we help you maximize your land’s potential.

Fact or Fiction?

Think you know your pollinators?

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Pollinating bee on prairie rose.
Pollinating bee on prairie rose. © DUC

What are pollinators?

Simply put, pollinators are organisms that help transfer pollen from one flowering plant to another. This fertilizes plants so that they can produce seeds and fruit.*

Remember the “Bs”: Bees, butterflies, birds (like hummingbirds) and some beetles are the most common pollinators in Canada. But moths, wasps and flies can pollinate plants, too.

(*Government of Canada website)

Graphic: What pollinators do

Why are pollinators important?

Pollinators are key to healthy and well-functioning biodiverse ecosystems. They provide critical links in the food chain of many animals, they also contribute to the survival of humans by pollinating and controlling pests on plants used for food, beverages, medicines, condiments, spices and even fabrics.

Bees and other pollinators have a natural partnership with agriculture. Wild bees are prolific and efficient pollinators that are critical for the reproduction of several valuable food crops and native vegetation species. According to our research, mixed natural areas play a very important role in providing resources to wild pollinators for nesting and foraging, especially when located in cropped landscapes.

With abundant habitat, pollinators help increase crop production through increased pollination. That means we can continue to enjoy the foods we eat and the beverages we drink!

What can I do to help pollinators?

Here are three easy ways anyone can help pollinators: 

  • Plant native plants in your garden or yard or on your balcony. Pollinators don’t need a big area of habitat to be successful, so every little bit helps. Learn more about wetland-friendly native plants that can also be great food and habitat sources for many pollinators!
  • Contribute to research using citizen science. Log your pollinator sightings on platforms like  iNaturalist,  Mission Monarch, eButterfly  and  Bumblebee Watch.
  • Support groups that conserve important habitat like wetlands and grasslands across Canada and North America. Donate, volunteer or advocate to help change policies that affect pollinators and biodiversity.

What do pollinators do?

How does pollination work, exactly? Let us show you! Here’s everything you wanted to know about pollination but were afraid to ask:

Learn about pollination
Natural areas, flowering crops such as canola, grasslands and wetlands all play a role in sustainable agriculture by providing exactly what pollinators need to survive and thrive while at the same time safeguarding the health of our soil and water. Kristine Tapley, DUC’s sustainable agriculture lead

Taking Action 

As a national conservation organization, DUC recognizes the critical role of our conservation work in providing healthy habitat for many wildlife species, including pollinators!

The habitat that pollinators and other beneficial insects depend on is also habitat that is important to ducks. This is especially true in parts of Canada like the prairies where patches of grasslands and wetlands continue to be lost at an alarming rate. We are supporting landowners and other partners to conserve and restore the habitats that help pollinator species throughout their lives.

Providing a pollen- and nectar-rich mix of agricultural legumes is a good step toward biodiversity health, and that’s why conservation initiatives such as DUC’s Marginal Areas Program are so important. This program specifically retires poorly producing acres and replaces crops with perennial forage or a pollinator-friendly flowering seed mix. 

More places where we are making an impact

Our conservation efforts impact diverse areas across the entire country—including your community.

Sign up for eDUC today

Learn more about DUC’s habitat conservation work to help create natural places and spaces for the health of Canada’s birds and the bees and other important pollinators!

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