Pollinators Expert Advisory Group
Safeguarding the continued well-being of bees (including solitary bees, bumble bees and honey bees) and other pollinators (such as hoverflies) from a range of threats.
The Pollinators Expert Advisory Group is an independent panel of experts, brought together by Defra’s Chief Scientist Professor Ian Boyd, to oversee a range of activities that have contributed to the development of the National Pollinator Strategy (NPS).
The group reviewed published evidence on the status of pollinators and pollination services and identified gaps in research where appropriate.
Bees (including solitary bees, bumble bees and honey bees) and other pollinators (such as hoverflies) provide an important service by pollinating crops and wild plants. They are valued for supporting biodiversity and ecosystem health. Pollinators also have an intrinsic cultural, aesthetic and social value that is appreciated by the public.
Declines in the health and populations of bees and other pollinators are seen globally as posing risks to biodiversity, long-term food security and ultimately human health. Pollinators in England potentially face many threats and there are growing concerns that these are leading to declines in diversity and the geographical range of some species.
The NPS has brought together pollinator-friendly initiatives and provided a coordinated approach to new action. The NPS considered evidence in relation to pollinators and the services they provide and proposes ways to address gaps.
Terms of reference
The Pollinators Expert Advisory Group will:
- provide challenge and support to the Department’s Chief Scientific Adviser (CSA) by conducting independent quality assurance of the scientific evidence base on the factors affecting the densities and health of wild and managed pollinator populations and the ecosystem services (pollination) they provide
- identify gaps and key research questions in the scientific evidence base at present or likely in the foreseeable future, and support the development of evidence strategy to address these gaps
- advise on the development and design of experiments to assess the effect of pesticides on pollinators and pollination at the landscape scale
- Professor Charles Godfray, University of Oxford (chair of group)
- Professor Lin Field, Rothamsted Research
- Professor Rosemary Hails, Centre for Ecology and Hydrology
- Professor Nick Hanley, University of Stirling
- Professor Stephen Martin, University of Salford
- Professor Simon Potts, University of Reading
- Dr Adam Vanbergen, Centre for Ecology and Hydrology
Regular meetings have been held:
- 10 June 2014 – eighth meeting
- 6 May 2014 – seventh meeting
- 18 Feb 2014 – sixth meeting
- 13 Nov 2013 – fifth meeting
- 24 Sept 2013 - fourth meeting
- 5 August 2013 - third meeting
- 4 July 2013 - second meeting
- 4 June 2013 - first meeting
The following work has been carried out by the group.
- Status and Value of Pollinators and Pollination Services - A review on the status and value of pollinators and pollination services completed to help inform the development of the National Pollinator Strategy
- Bees and other pollinators: their health and value. A report outlining the current and proposed government led policies and initiatives to support bees and other pollinators in England