Mack Laing Pollinator Bed

Supporting Pollinators

You can help make the Town of Comox a pollinator paradise!

Pollinator bed

Pollinators like native bees, butterflies, moths, beetles, wasps and flies carry pollen from the male parts of the flower to the female parts of the same or another flower. For plants to become fertilized and produce fruit and seeds, pollination must occur.

Pollinators are essential to the production of approximately 1/3 of our food supply and approximately 75% of flowering plants rely on animals to assist in fertilization.

Insect populations are facing numerous threats, including habitat loss from pesticide use, climate change, and the introduction of invasive species. 

Download the Pollinator Plant Brochure - 6 How-to-Steps 


The buzz on Honeybees

Honeybees are not native, they were brought to North America by European settlers and have been managed for use in the agricultural industry. Honeybees are highly social, live in hives with a queen, and produce honey.

Although Honeybees are facing challenges including habitat loss, pesticide use, impacts from mites and colony collapse, they are not at risk of extinction.

There are over 400 native bee species in BC, and the majority of these are solitary; although they may nest in proximity to one another, each female is responsible for her own nest and offspring. They make their homes in underground tunnels, in hollow stems or in cavities of dead wood, without a hive to protect native bees are generally very docile and will rarely sting. Bumblebees are the exception; they form small nests with one queen and even produce small amounts of honey for their own use. They may sting, but only if the nest is disturbed or if they are accidentally stepped upon.

Bumblebee on Woolly Sunflower
Bumblebee on Woolly Sunflower - Filberg Park 


The scoop on monarch butterflies 

Our large native Swallowtail butterflies are often mistaken for Monarch butterflies, but Monarch butterflies and Milkweed are not native to Vancouver Island. While we have the occasional monarch sightings on the island, they do not breed here. Therefore, the campaigns to plant milkweed to save the butterflies are not beneficial here and could potentially even be harmful to our ecosystem. But don’t worry! There are plenty of other butterfly species native to our area that you can help.

Western Tiger Swallowtail butterfly
Western Tiger Swallowtail butterfly 

There are approximately 70 butterfly species native to Vancouver Island, and most of them spend their entire lifecycle here, overwintering as eggs, larvae, pupae, or adults. Butterflies are generalists and feed on nectar from a wide variety of plants, but they will only lay their eggs on a select few host plants. In order to have a successful butterfly garden, a variety of native host and nectar plants need to be incorporated into your landscape plans.