Planting a seed

CREATING HABITAT — Tracy Area High School’s Maddy Schumacher spreads plant and native grass seed last week at the new pollinator plot on land near the elementary school.

TAHS students — with some help from Pheasants Forever — create outdoor laboratory to foster a pollinator-friendly environment near the school

By Per Peterson

“Which bees do all the work — the males or the females?”
That was one of the questions posed last week to Tracy Area High School biology students by bee keeper and Lyon County Pheasants Forever member Ron Prorok.
“Males,” was the overwhelming answer from the students.
They were wrong.
“No, it’s the females,” Prorok said. “The queens do all the work laying eggs. The males, or drones, have it made. They don’t really do much of anything all summer. Their job is to go out and find mates.”
Prorok was in Tracy on Thursday with some of his domesticated bees to kick off Lyon County Pheasants Forever’s first “Youth Pollinator Habitat Program.” Pheasants Forever is working with TAHS in an effort to support outdoor education and promote diverse wildlife habitat for the future of pollinators and upland game birds.
“Planting pollinators help the bees stay healthy, and we want the bees to be healthy so they can pollinate our trees, even our soybean crops — we need pollinators of some sort to help us out,” Prorok said. “The heartier that we can keep them, the better off that we can be long-term.”

For more on this article, see this week’s Headlight-Herald.