Pollinators

Pollinators like bees and butterflies are critical to the health of our ecosystems and essential to producing many of the foods we love.

Pollinators are responsible for as much as one third of food we consume! Unfortunately, populations of pollinating insects are declining and some formerly common species are now at risk of extinction. There are many reasons for pollinator decline, but habitat loss is one key factor.

Gulf fritillary butterfly in Collins River prairie

Gulf fritillary

Long-horned bee

Long-horned bee

Gray hairstreak butterfly on butterfly milkweed

Gray hairstreak

Hawkmoth on endangered larkspur

Hawkmoth

TVA is playing an important role in slowing or even reversing this decline by encouraging native wildflowers and grasses on transmission line rights of way and other lands. Specifically, we create and maintain habitat for pollinators by:

  • Using integrated vegetation management, including selective use of herbicide, to clear trees from transmission line rights of way
  • Managing grasslands on TVA land for native plants, on which pollinators depend
  • Planting wildflowers native to the TVA service area on sites that were previously mowed turf grass

 

Pollinator News

Into Elfin Territory

A father-son duo's discovery of frosted elfins, an endangered butterfly species, in a TVA right of way area is helping lead the way to grassland conservation efforts.

Two TVA Scientists Recognized for Pollinator Documentary

Two TVA scientists received an EPRI award for their documentary film Power for Pollinators, which showcases how power companies are working to conserve pollinator species and habitats.

One Bee at a Time

Trotter Bluff Small Wild Area is a perfect place for a short, wooded hike along the water. It soon will have another claim to fame as a home to a colorful collection of flowers and grasses that will help feed hungry pollinators.

Bees and Butterflies Find New Native Habitat

Pollinators — beautiful, important links in our food chain — find themselves welcome at the Collins River Prairie, a peaceful oasis beneath power lines.

Monarch butterfly in right of way meadow

Power Line Rights-of-Way: A Haven for Disappearing Grassland Ecosystems?

Transmission line rights of way can be great habitat for pollinators! A three-year study found TVA rights of way supported 13-16 times more bees than the surrounding forest. From EPRI Journal.

From the Field

Systems Operation Center

Learn how TVA incorporated biodiversity into a large construction project by preserving a meadow habitat for the bees, birds and butterflies.

Collective Efforts

EPRI pollinators map

Click to view a live map and the pollinator dashboard.

TVA participates in Electric Power Research Institute’s (EPRI) Power-in-Pol­linator initiative, which collects information about what various utilities are doing on-the-ground to protect pollinators in order to show the collective result of these efforts.

View a map, photos and details of these pollinator projects on the EPRI Pollinator Stewardship Dashboard. Note: To only view TVA's projects, filter the Company by "Tennessee Valley Authority".

 

How You Can Help

  • Plant native flowers that attract bees, butterflies and moths
  • Reduce use of chemicals on your property
  • Select native plants in landscaping your lawn
  • Buy food products that are habitat friendly (e.g., Bee Better certified)