UMass Extension Symposium: Pollinator Health for Agriculture and Landscapes – March 26, 2015

UMass Extension Symposium: Pollinator Health for Agriculture and Landscapes

March 26, 2015

Campus Center Auditorium, University of Massachusetts, Amherst

8:00 AM Registration and Coffee

8:45 AM Welcome, Anne Averill, Dept. of Environmental Conservation, UMass

9:00 – 10:00 AM Biology, Diversity and Conservation of Native Bees in the Northeast, Joan Milam, Department of Environmental Conservation, UMass

Pollinators are key elements of native biodiversity, and bees in particular provide important ecosystem services in terms of pollination for native plants that support plant …

Bryan Danforth – Cornell University

Dr. Danforth is a professor of Entomology and serves the team as an authority on bees and bee biology; his group has been providing information on the apple pollination system, which allows comparison across all of our crop systems. He has been coordinating research in NY apple and has been rounding out the survey work of the Pollinator Security for Northeastern Crops project by submitting bees from apple orchards and pollen samples for analysis of pathogen identification/prevalence and pesticide loads,

Cynthia Loftin – University of Maine, USGS

Dr. Loftin is currently studying the spatial analysis of pollination deficit and bee community assessment associated with blueberry fields in Maine.  This role includes editing available land cover maps to reflect current landscapes surrounding Maine’s blueberry fields, assessing change in field distribution since the base map was produced, and compiling other spatial data sets to be used in the landscape analysis.  Dr. Loftin has been working with the Maine team in the Pollinator Security for Northeastern Crops project to develop

Samuel Hanes – University of Maine

Dr. Hanes is in the Department of Anthropology and has been conducting a sociological analysis of farmers, for the Pollinator Security in Northeastern Crops project, as it relates to their understanding of pollination, pollinator biology, and the management of pollinators. This research characterizes grower philosophies and perceptions, but also sheds light on best strategies for outreach and technology transfer.

Contact Information:

email: samuel.hanes@umit.maine.edu

John Skinner – University of Tennessee

Dr. Skinner is in the Department of Entomology and Plant Pathology where he is Professor and Extension Apiculturist. He is the Director for the eXtension.org Community of Practice in Bee Health.

His work in the Pollinator Security for Northeastern Corps project has been to oversee provision of electronic access to information through extension.org/bee_health, which includes the project plan, objectives, members, and results. Much of his recent effort has been filming and then posting extensive video footage of the participating commodities

Anne Averill – The University of Massachusetts- Amherst

Dr. Anne Averill is Project Director and works to coordinate the research and outreach efforts of the many cooperators in the Pollinator Security for Northeastern Crops USDA-SCRI grant.

She is a professor and co-director of the Environmental Science undergraduate major in the Department of Environmental Conservation at UMass-Amherst. Her specialization is in Insect Behavior and Ecology (Insect/Plant Interactions, Cranberry Entomology).  For the SCRI project, she also leads the research on cranberry.  She is conducting studies of the bee community in …

Aaron Hoshide- The University of Maine

Dr. Hoshide is in the School of Economics and serves as the lead on agricultural farm economics for the Pollinator Security for Northeastern Corps project. He is developing economic analyses on management decisions and providing end-user information. He is collaborating in the assessment of the economic cost / benefit ratio of native pollinators across blueberry and cranberry and investigating the economic incentives and impediments to growers who may choose to implement production practices to enhance pollination.

Contact Information:

email: aaron.hoshide@umit.maine.edu

Kourtney Collum – The University of Maine

Kourtney Collum is a Ph.D. student in the Anthropology & Environmental Policy program at the University of Maine, working under the supervision of Dr. Samuel Hanes. As a research assistant on the USDA funded “Pollination Security” project, Kourtney examines the social and political factors that influence the adoption of pollinator conservation.

Through a comparative study of lowbush blueberry growers in Maine, USA and Prince Edward Island (PEI), Canada, Kourtney’s research examines the influence of agricultural policy, governmental and non-governmental agricultural …

Eric Venturini – The University of Maine


Eric Venturini has a diverse background in resource management, research, and agriculture. His experience includes over two years of work on organic farms and over 200 days at-sea helping to manage long-line and trawl fisheries in Pacific. He is now studying at the University of Maine and expects to receive his Masters of Science in May, 2014.

Eric’s role on the Pollination Security Team is to study the influence that bee pasture has on native bee communities in Maine’s lowbush …

Shannon Chapin – The University of Maine


Shannon Chapin is currently a graduate research assistant working towards a Master of Science in Ecology and Environmental Science at the University of Maine, under Drs. Cynthia Loftin and Frank Drummond. Shannon’s research focuses on using spatial modeling tools to assess the effects of landscape characteristics on Maine’s native bees.

She received a BS in Geography, with minors in Wildlife and Fisheries Science, and Climatology from The Pennsylvania State University, and a graduate certificate in Geospatial Sciences from Humboldt State …