Boosting the butterfly population

‚ÄčSpeaker: Melissa Panella, Game and Parks Commission

Melissa Panella, fish and wildlife biologist with the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission (NGPC) in Lincoln, spoke about monarch butterflies and the Nebraska Natural Legacy Project.
According to NGPC, the project "is part of a nationwide effort to address the needs of declining wildlife populations. Nebraska’s biological treasures include 60 amphibian and reptile species, 80 fish species, 400 bird species, 85 mammal species, 1,470 plant species and tens of thousands of invertebrate species. Of these, more than two dozen species of plants and animals in Nebraska are listed as threatened or endangered."
Every state is required to have a wildlife action plan, Panella explained. She works with moths, beetles, bees, ruby-throated hummingbirds and butterflies, whose populations have been declining, possible due to exposure to pesticides and herbicides. 
NGPC will be planting milkweed by the Cowboy Trail because caterpillars need it. She recommends anyone plant a pollinator garden using milkweed to help the monarch population. 

Rotary plans band fundraisers

• The chapter is applying for a Rotary Foundation grant to pay for band cymbals for Blair Community Schools.
• An instrument drive for the band has been planned for Aug. 20, possibly at the BCS Administration Building (formerly West Primary School). Rotarians will be needed to volunteer. 
• Member Jim Nelson has been working on a "Chevrolet Test Drive" fundraiser at Sid Dillon. Customers pay $20 to test-drive a car, and proceeds would benefit the band. 
• Jim is also planning a fundraiser Oct. 8 at South Creek Conference Center. The Superband would play and food would be served, but in a more casual setting than the previous fundraiser. The event would benefit the Otte Middle School Band Boosters. That group would also help out with a silent auction. 

Don't forget — Rotary Foundation donations due!

The end of the year is approaching, which means Rotary Foundation donations are due June 30. Rotarians are expected to contribute at least $100 to the Foundation. Checks can be made out to the Rotary Foundation and given to Rotarian Kyle Acre, or donate online here: Click on "Annual Fund and Share."