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Nature

Oregonians to Celebrate the Region's 500 Bee Species During National Pollinator Week

Oregon_bees.jpg
Andony Melathopoulos
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People will be celebrating the work of bees, birds, butterflies, bats and beetles during National Pollinator Week -- June 18-24. Oregonians are zeroing in on bees, an insect with over 500 species in the Pacific Northwest.

The Oregon Bee Project and numerous community organizations are observing by hosting public events throughout the state. The purpose is to educate people on bee health and conservation.

Andony Melathopoulos is the pollinator health extension specialist with the State of Oregon. He’s also an associate professor in OSU’s Horticulture department.

“The one thing I’d say about all the events, the activities are really hands-on. We really try to encourage people, challenge people on what are bees, and how to help them and really try to give them someone that they haven’t seen before,” he says. “I think that’s one of the central themes of this year’s National Pollinator Week, is we’re going to show you something that you never seen before. And there’s a lot of things you haven’t seen. [laughter] Bees are just everywhere and they live such fascinating lives.”

The Oregon Bee Project will release its strategic plan next week. It will give partner organizations tools to improve their bee conservation work.