Into the Marsh

How Do You Bee?

Students learn about bee pollinators and manage their arrival to and departure from the marsh.

Lesson Overview

When is the optimum time for cranberry growers to get bees for pollination?

In this lesson, students continue to manage the marsh they selected in Adopt a Cranberry Marsh. This time students examine information to decide when honey bees (in rented hives) should arrive to ensure optimal pollination of the cranberry flowers. Students must also choose a date by which the bees should leave the marsh. Once they have recorded their decisions, students receive feedback on how a marsh would be expected to perform, given the choices they have made.

The information students receive and weigh includes: weather forecast data, a review of pollination, natural history of the honey and bumble bee, and risks of weeds being pollinated. This lesson heightens students’ awareness of the various roles that insects play in the cranberry marsh—potential pests, supporter of the overall ecosystem health and critical pollinator.