The National Wildlife Federation

Community Profile

Pledge Status

Complete

Pledge Date

Friday, February 3, 2023

Program Year

2023

Achievement

Leadership Circle

2023

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Action Item Report

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Lexington Fayette Urban County Government

Lexington, KY

Linda Gorton

Mayor

Pledge Summary

Lexington and Fayette County are located in the Inner Bluegrass Region of Central Kentucky. The Lexington Fayette Urban County Government is a merged city/county government that serves the citizens of this community. Lexington is the 2nd largest city in Kentucky and is considered cultural hub for the region. Agriculture and tourism are key industries to the area as we are known as the Horse Capital of the World and internationally known for the Bourbon produced locally. Without pollinators these industries that are part of the cultural identity of the Bluegrass State wouldn't exist. Lexington hopes to lead the way for our neighbors across the state in promoting and protecting vulnerable pollinator habitat.

Community Spotlight

Action Items Committed for 2023

Communications and Convening

  • Issue a proclamation to raise awareness about the decline of the monarch butterfly and the species’ need for habitat. This proclamation must incorporate a focus on monarch conservation.
  • Engage with city parks and recreation, public works, sustainability, and other relevant staff to identify opportunities to revise and maintain mowing programs and milkweed / native nectar plant planting programs.
  • Engage with community garden groups and urge them to plant native milkweeds and nectar-producing plants.
  • Launch or maintain a public communication effort to encourage residents to plant monarch gardens at their homes or in their neighborhoods. (If you have community members who speak a language other than English, we encourage you to also communicate in that language; Champion Pledges must communicate in that language.)

Program and Demonstration Gardens

  • Display educational signage at monarch gardens and pollinator habitat.
  • Host or support a monarch butterfly festival that is accessible to all residents in the community and promotes monarch and pollinator conservation, as well as cultural awareness and recognition.
  • Launch, expand, or continue an invasive species removal program that will support the re-establishment of native habitat for monarch butterflies and other pollinators.
  • Initiate or support community science (or citizen science) efforts that help monitor monarch migration and health.
  • Launch or maintain an outdoor education program(s) (e.g., at schools, after-school programs, community centers and groups) that builds awareness and creates habitat by engaging students, educators, and the community in planting native milkweed and pollinator-friendly native nectar plants (i.e., National Wildlife Federation’s Schoolyard Habitats program and Monarch Mission curriculum).
  • Plant or maintain a monarch and pollinator-friendly demonstration garden at City Hall or another prominent or culturally significant community location.
  • Facilitate or support a milkweed seed collection and propagation effort.
  • Host or support a native seed or plant sale, giveaway or swap.

Systems Change

  • Integrate monarch butterfly conservation into the city’s Park Master Plan, Sustainability Plan, Climate Resiliency Plan or other city plans.
  • Change weed or mowing ordinances to allow for native prairie and plant habitats.