Embedding Sustainable Pollination Management into Nepalese Agricultural Systems

Our project is based in Karnali Province, much of which comprises the threatened Western Himalayan Alpine Shrub and Meadows ecoregion. Karnali is the largest and poorest province of Nepal, with only 23% of the population classified as food secure (UNDP 2020). Many crops in this region (e.g., apples, beans and pumpkins) are highly pollinator-dependent and reliant on a range of native flies (primarily Eristalis spp.), solitary bees (primarily Halictidae), bumblebees (Bombus spp.), and most importantly, the native honeybee Apis cerana which has been reported declining in this region. There is strong political will from the provincial and national-level government to promote biodiversity-friendly farming practices. However, various barriers, including a lack of farmer awareness, a lack of capacity, and no evidence to inform policy, prevent this political will from translating into meaningful outputs for farmers on the ground. Working with partners in Nepal and drawing on an evidence base from our ongoing pollination project, this Darwin project will raise awareness of pollination, increase the capacity of individuals and institutions to research and manage pollination services, and facilitate the design of policies to conserve and enhance pollinator biodiversity in Nepal.

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