Course on Managing Pollinators and Predatory Insects, WI

MANAGING YOUR INSECT ALLIES: A Full Day Organic Farming Short Course; Thursday, February 24, 10:30 am to 5:30 pm - La Crosse, WI

Predatory insects and pollinators are the unsung champions of the agricultural world. Join the Xerces Society's Eric Mader for a full day organic farming workshop on how to support these often overlooked and undervalued allies on working row crop, vegetable, and fruit farms. Introductory course topics include: Basic principles of beneficial insect and native bee biology; The economics of pollinators and beneficial insects; Recognizing pollinators and beneficial insect species; Assessing pollinator and beneficial insect habitat Advance modules will cover: Habitat restoration guidelines; Balancing farm practices with insect ecology; How to access technical and financial resources for beneficial insect conservation through the USDA

The course includes real-world examples of restored insect habitats from across the country, and will feature case studies of farms that achieve all of their pest-management and pollination needs through insect conservation alone. Various native bee nests, books, and conservation tools will be displayed during the session. Participants are encouraged to bring maps or aerial photos of their own farms for specific conservation planning feedback. The course is offered as an Organic University session of the MOSES Organic Farming Conference (OFC). The MOSES Organic Farming Conference is the largest organic farming conference in the U.S. Organized by the Midwest Organic and Sustainable Education Service (MOSES), and held annually in La Crosse, WI, the OFC is an extraordinary, farmer-centered event. With over 70 informative workshops, 150+ exhibitors, locally-sourced organic food, live entertainment and inspirational keynote speakers, the OFC is celebrated as the foremost educational and networking event in the organic farming community. From its humble beginning with 90 attendees twenty years ago, the most recent conference in February 2010 attracted over 2,700 farmers, advocates, educators, students, and more! Note: Continuing Education Unit (CEU) Credits for Certified Crop Advisors have been applied for through the Certified Crop Advisor Program and will be available for many of the workshops and Organic University courses. Credits available will be listed in the conference program. Please sign up on in-room sign in sheets at the conference if you are eligible for CEU credits. Location: La Crosse Center, 300 Harborview Plaza, La Crosse, WI 54601 Cost: $170 includes breakfast, lunch, and course materials. Registration: Register online with the Midwest Organic and Sustainable Education Service by February 11th. Walk-in registrations are available, but limited. ACKNOWLEDGMENTS This full-day intensive course is supported by MOSES, Ceres Foundation, Organic Valley, Turner Foundation, CS Fund, the Natural Resources Foundation of Wisconsin, and the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service.

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