Portland Protecting Pollinators

By John Rosapepe, Pacific Northwest Representative

The  Endangered Species Coalition helped students in Oregon schools celebrate Endangered Species Day and become engaged in conservation of pollinators.

In my role as Pacific Northwest Representative, I visited two Portland area schools to plant native seedlings that will grow to help pollinators come back and helped organize a chalk art event.

At the planting site, dirty hands were the norm for students outside Portland’s Sunnyside Environmental School as they celebrated the 19th anniversary of Endangered Species Day. Five different classes, ranging from kindergarteners to eighth graders, used chalk, paint brushes, rakes and shovels to celebrate Oregon’s threatened and endangered plants and animals.

Twelve-year olds paired up with five-year olds, and  turned over soil and planted  thirty native pollinators. They also planted white fluffy milkweed seeds for Western Monarchs that migrate through the city later in the year.

Four days later two fifth grade classes chalked twelve different threatened and endangered species on sidewalks between the freshly installed plants. Among the dozen portraits were a Franklin’s bumblebee, a Fender’s blue butterfly, a gray wolf, a green turtle and Macfarlane’s four o’clock.

Portland artist Deborah Smith worked with groups of five students on each portrait, guided them through their designs, helped them choose amongst the 48 different pastel colors, and showed them hand, brush and techniques to highlight their creations.

 You can learn how you can get engaged in protecting pollinators with the Endangered Species Coalition’s Pollinator Protectors Campaign.

Wolf in Yellowstone in snowy environment with forested background
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