Niagara-on-the-Lake is a bee-friendly town, but not a Bee City.
When Renee Delaney asked that Niagara-on-the-Lake be designated a Bee City during an April council meeting, her request was sent to the Town's agricultural committee. The designation would have meant the Town supports planting pollinator gardens and educating people about the importance of bees.
At its last meeting, the agricultural committee recommended council recognize NOTL as a bee-friendly town that promotes pollinator gardens, but that Delaney's request for the town to become a designated Bee City be denied.
The recommendation was approved by council at its last meeting of this term.
During her presentation to council in the spring, Delaney spoke of a connection between the decline of bees and the use of pesticides, but later clarified a Bee City designation does not require a ban on pesticides.
“That connection should never have happened in a farm community where pesticides have to be used periodically to protect crops,” said agricultural committee member Austin Kirkby in an email following the meeting.
Through the Communities in Bloom committee and partnerships with community groups, there have been several pollinator plantings in town, including gardens in St. Davids, at Newark Park, the William-Nassau Street Park, and at the corner of John and King Streets.
Other Niagara communities such as Niagara Falls and St. Catharines and about 20 municipalities across Canada have made the decision to become Bee Cities.