We’re officially open to the Public!

The Pollinatarium has officially opened to the public! It is the first free-standing science center in the nation devoted to flowering plants and their pollinators. Why do plants and pollinators merit such special attention? The ecological interaction between pollinators and plants is vitally important because most terrestrial life on Earth depends in one way or another on pollination for survival. Over 75% of all flowering plant species depend on animal pollinators in order to reproduce, so pollination is a key process that sustains all kinds of communities around the world. And among Earth’s inhabitants depending on pollinators for their existence are humans; about one-third of the diet consumed by people around the world—the part with most of the vitamins and minerals–is the result of the pollinator-plant interaction. Pollination is therefore economically important as well. In the U.S. alone, pollinator efforts contribute close to $20 billion to the economy and worldwide pollinator activities are worth over $200 billion. Because so much depends on pollination, the UI Pollinatarium is dedicated to increasing awareness and appreciation of pollination as a remarkable ecological partnership and an essential ecosystem service.

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