Iowa Learning Farms Webinar: Promoting Bee Productivity with Prairie Strips

Presentation will highlight connections between bee populations and conservation practices on farms

January 12, 2022, 8:48 am | Liz Ripley

AMES, Iowa – The Iowa Learning Farms conservation webinar taking place Jan. 19 at noon will feature Amy Toth, professor in the Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Organismal Biology at Iowa State University. Toth is an integrative biologist studying the fundamental and applied aspects of the biology of social insects. Her laboratory investigates aspects of the behavior, genetics, evolution and ecology of bees and wasps.

In the webinar, “Can prairie habitat in the farm-dominated landscape of Iowa benefit bees and beekeepers?” Toth will discuss the interconnections between bees and agronomic practices such as prairie strips in supporting the success of managed honeybee apiaries.

bees in field.Iowa Learning Farms is part of Iowa State University Extension and Outreach.

Toth will also describe research on some of the environmental stressors facing bee populations in Iowa and recent research results suggesting the benefits of natural woodland and prairie habitat to bee populations. 

“Bees in crop-field dominated areas lack the forage resources of abundant, diverse, and nutritious pollen and nectar that is important to colony health and productivity,” said Toth. “The beneficial crossover of agricultural conservation practices and promoting thriving bee populations should be of interest to anyone involved in agriculture and sustainability. This should also help farmers and landowners better understand the role they can play in providing habitat that sustains pollinators while also improving soil health and reducing runoff.”

Participants in Iowa Learning Farms Conservation Webinars are encouraged to ask questions of the presenters. People from all backgrounds and areas of interest are encouraged to join.

Webinar access anstructions

To participate in the live webinar, shortly before noon CST Jan. 19:

The webinar will also be recorded and archived on the ILF website, so that it can be watched at any time. Archived webinars are available at

A Certified Crop Adviser board-approved continuing education unit has been applied for. Those who participate in the live webinar are eligible. Information about how to apply to receive the CEU will be provided at the end of the live webinar.

Shareable photo: Bee team (former students Ashley St. Clair and Zoe Pritchard) at work in one of Iowa State's prairie apiaries.

About the Authors: 

Liz Ripley

Iowa Learning Farms and Water Rocks!