Councils could help increase the population of bees and other pollinators while saving money by cutting the grass on their land less frequently, environmental experts have said.
Friends of the Earth and Buglife say scaling back on grass cutting in areas such as parks and roadsides allows wildflowers to grow and attracts pollinators, whose decline in population over the last 50 years is attributed to a reduction in wildlflowers.
According to the organisations, two of the 19 county councils which replied to a survey have published policies on how to increase the population of pollinators including butterflies and moths in their areas.
Devon and Dorset CCs have ’pollinator action plans’ in place, while Hampshire, Kent, Worcestershire and Somerset CCs said they were currently drawing up plans.
Dorset said it currently saves around £93,000 a year by reducing grass-cutting services on rural roads to “when needed”.
The council’s senior ecologist Annabel King said: “We are very proud to be one of the first local authorities to produce and implement a pollinator action plan.
“The plan has enabled us to make significant savings - we save around £93,000 a year by only cutting rural road verges when needed, allowing wildflowers and grasses to flower and set seed.”