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All Pollinators Content

aerial view of South Dakota farm and surrounding land


During the growing season, SDSU Extension provides weekly production recommendations.

A tiger swallowtail drinking nectar from a purple blazing star flower.

Five Range Management Principles: #3 Ecosystem Biodiversity

Milkweed can help make rangelands a better environment for both cattle and neighboring plants and animals by having a shielding effect on companion plants, preventing erosion and accelerating the decomposition process, whole also providing nectar, habitat and organic material for ecosystem services.

Green bee on yellow flower.

Time to Spray Sunflowers: Don’t Forget About the Pollinators

As sunflowers in South Dakota begin to reach the flowering stages, it is important to remember that, in addition to insect pests, there are also pollinators visiting these flowers.

A black and yellow striped fly with large red eyes resting on a flower. The fly is covered in yellow pollen.

It’s a Bee! It’s a Wasp! No, It’s a Hover Fly!

Many types of insects are responsible for some degree of pollination in landscapes. In this article, we will focus on the syrphid fly as both an important pollinator and a beneficial insect predator.

Left: Adult honey bee. Right: Bicolored striped-sweat bee

Beneficial Pollinators: Honey Bees and Bicolored Striped-Sweat Bee

With temperatures increasing in South Dakota, expect to see an increase of beneficial pollinators searching for blooming plants. Learn about two important pollinators, the honey bee and the native bicolored striped-sweat bee.

Four common, native milkweed plants: butterfly weed, swamp milkweed, common milkweed and whorled milkweed.

Garden-friendly Milkweeds to Plant in South Dakota

Are you looking to add native plants to your home garden this season? Consider expanding your garden palette with milkweed species that are native to South Dakota.

Green bee on yellow flower.

Bees and Other Pollinators Visiting Sunflower

While insecticides are often necessary to reduce pest populations and prevent yield loss in sunflower, it is important to consider the impact they may have on beneficial insects, like bees and other native pollinators.

Orange beetle with black markings on an orange flower.

Soldier Beetles Visiting Flowers

Flowers in many gardens are currently being visited by soldier beetles. While these orange beetles have a strong preference for flowering plants, they are predators and pollinators and don’t pose a threat to your garden.

Three bees. From left: metallic native wild bee, brown native wild bees and bumble bee.

Pollinators Are Active in Sunflower

While scouting sunflowers, it’s hard to not notice the constant buzzing present in the field, which is produced by numerous species of bees. While sunflower varieties grown in the United States were bred for self-fertility, there is evidence that both honey bees and native wild bees can improve pollination.

Variety of native plants growing in a healthy, well-managed grassland.

Diversity and Partnerships Are Keys To Preventing Endangered Species Impacts

South Dakota’s farmers and ranchers have significant influence on the management of our state’s natural resources, especially grasslands and the species that inhabit them. These species remind us of the importance of natural resources management for the greater good.