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The decline of insect numbers threatens the collapse of nature & # 39; | Environment

Insects around the world hurt the path of extinction, which threatens a "dense fall in ecosystems of nature", according to the first global scientific study.

Over 40% of insect species decreases and one third is endangered, assessment is found. The rate of extinction is eight times faster than mammals, birds and reptiles. The total mass of insects falls by a minimum of 2.5% per year, according to the best available data, suggesting they will disappear for a century.

The planet begins with six mass disappearances in its history, with huge losses being reported to larger animals that are easier to study. But insects are the most varied and abundant animals, more than 1

7 times in humanity. They are "essential" for the proper functioning of all ecosystems, researchers say, as food for other creatures, pollinators and recyclers of nutrients.

Populations of insect infestation have recently been reported in Germany and Puerto Rico, but analysis explicitly implies the global crisis. Researchers say their conclusions on unusual forces for a written scientific paper: "The [insect] talks proved that the occurrence of six major extinction affects the [on] forms of life on our planet.

"Unless we change our way of making food, insects altogether fall on the path of destruction in decades," they write. "Its effects for the ecosystem the planet is calamitous to say. "

  Lose butterflies of copper.

Lose butterflies of bronze. Photograph: Marlene Finlayson / Alamy Stock Photo / Alamy

Butterflies and moths

There was an "extreme reduction" in butterflies and moths in the Kullaberg Nature Reserve in Sweden compared to 50 years ago. Scientists found over more than a quarter of the 600 species found once were lost. Butterflies are the most difficult to lose, losing almost one half of the species, including large tortoiseshells and brass tiles. In England, two-thirds of 340 species of moth dropped in 1968-2003.


Museum notes the scientists have confirmed the fate of the 16 species of bumblebees in the midwest of the US from 1900 to 2007 They found four were completely killed, while eight dropped in number, and blamed the intensive agricultural and pesticide.


Red Unicorn populations have fallen dramatically in Japan since the mid-1990s, where scientists linked insecticides to rice paddies to stop with lifelong nymphs that appear to the elderly. In the United States, recent surveys in California and Nevada have found 65% of dragonflies and damselflies being rejected for 100 years since 1914.


often form leafhoppers and planthoppers flying insects in the European grasslands. But scientists have discovered that their abundance in Germany has fallen by 66% over 50 years to 2010. Land degradation, partly due to heavy fertilizer, is the main cause.

Ground beetles

the dramatic decline in beetles in the soil is seen in almost three quarters of the 68 types of carbine studied from 1994 to 2008. Some species have increased, but generally one in six of all beetles have disappeared at that time.

The analysis, published in the journal Biological Conservation, says the main driver of refusal is particularly intensive agriculture, especially the heavy use of pesticides. Urbanization and climate change are also important.

"If the loss of insect species is uncontrollable, it will have disasters for both the planet's ecosystem and for the safety of mankind," says Francisco Sánchez-Bayo, at the University of Sydney, Australia, wrote a review of Kris Wyckhuys at the China Academy of Agricultural Sciences in Beijing.

The 2.5% annual loss rate over the past 25 to 30 years is "surprising", Sánchez-Bayo told the Guardian: "It's very fast. Within 10 years you will have a half month, inside of the 50-year-olds remaining and for 100 years you do not have. "

One of the greatest effects of insect loss is the many birds, reptiles, amphibians and fish that eat insects. "If the source of food is taken, all these animals die in death," he said. Such cascading effect has been found in Puerto Rico, where a recent study revealed 98% of the incidence of soil insects for 35 years.

The new study chose the 73 best studies conducted so far to assess the decrease in insects. Butterflies and moth are among the worst hits. For example, the number of large butterfly species fell by 58% in UK farmland between 2000 and 2009. The UK suffered the largest recorded insect dropped in general, though it was probably a result of being more thorough study than most places. [19659023] Surveying butterflies in Maine, US. "src =" https://i.guim.co.uk/img/media/b534077dca868f430ef6874d1ef170ec721293c0/0_0_2945_1879/master/2945.jpg?width=300&quality=85&auto=format&fit=max&s=e625638e9c6d55eb591c89a8ffc07613 "/>

Education of butterflies in Maine, US. Photograph: Shawn Patrick Ouellette / Getty Images

Bees are also very seriously, with only half of the species of bees found in Oklahoma in the US in 1949 that were present in 2013. The number of honeybee colonies in the US was 6 million in 1947, but 3.5 million lost Since

There are over 350,000 beetle species and many thought to be denied, especially beetle beetles. But there are also large spaces in knowledge, with little knowledge of the many flies, ants, aphids, shield bugs and crickets. Experts say there is no reason to think that they are better than the studied species.

A small number of adaptable species is increasing in number, but not enough to exceed huge losses. "There are always some species that take advantage of the vacuum remaining in the extinction of other species," says Sanchez-Bayo. In the US, common eastern bees are growing due to its tolerance to pesticides.

Insect graph

Most of the studied studies were made in western Europe and the United States, with some from Australia to China and Brazil in South Africa, but very few exist elsewhere.

"The main cause of rejection is the intensification of agriculture," says Sánchez-Bayo. "That means removing all the trees and bushes that are common around the fields, so there are plain, nude fields treated with synthetic fertilizers and pesticides." He said that the death of insects seems to have begun at the beginning of the 20th century, accelerating the 1950s and 1960s and reaching "scary measurements" over the last two decades.

He thinks that new insecticide classes introduced in the last 20 years, including neonicotinoids and fipronil, are particularly harmful as they are used regularly and the environment is constantly: "They are overpowering the soil, all the grains. " It has effects even on natural resources; 75% insect damage recorded in Germany is in protected areas.

  German conservation workers are checking out a city garden for insects.

German conservationists are checking out a city garden for insects. Photograph: Sean Gallup / Getty Images

The world must change its way of eating it, Sánchez-Bayo said, that organic farms have more insects and the occasional use of pesticide in the past does not cause rejection seen over the past decades. "Agricultural, intensive agriculture has killed ecosystems," he said.

In tropics, where agricultural agriculture is often not yet present, climate change due to climate change is considered an important decline factor. The types of animals there are adapted to a very stable state and have little ability to change, as seen in Puerto Rico.

Sánchez-Bayo said that the unusual strength of the language used in the examination is not alarmist. "We really want people to wake up" and the reviewers and editors agree, he said. "When you consider 80% of biomass insects are lost over 25-30 years, this is a big concern."

Other scientists agree that the insect losses are clearly a serious global problem. "All the evidence points to the same direction," says Prof Dave Goulson at the University of Sussex in the UK. "It should be a big concern for all of us, because insects are at the heart of every web of food, they bind most plant species, maintain healthy soil, recycle nutrients, control pests, and many more. Love them or their persecution, we can not survive without insects. "

Matt Shardlow, in storage of Buglife's charity, says:" It is difficult to observe to see comparisons of evidence showing the miserable conditions of insect populations in the world. It is clear that the planet's ecology is overthrow and there is a need for an intense and global effort to stop and reverse these dreadful trends. "In his opinion, the review partially overemphasises the role of pesticides and underplays global warming, though other unstudied

  bo The volunteer is looking for a wormwood moetrous beetle in Suffolk, UK.

Volunteers are looking for a wormwood moconhiner beetle in Suffolk, UK. Picture: Sean Smith / The Guardian

Prof Paul Ehrlich, at Stanford Universityin in the US, has seen insects lost in the past, through his work on butterflies checkerspot at Stanford's Jasper Ridge reserve. He first studied them in 1960 but they were all lost in 2000, due to climate change.

Ehrlich praised the review, saying: "It is wonderful to go through all the studies and study them as well as them." He said that the particular large denial of the Aquatic insects are noteworthy. "But they did not mention that it is a person of overpopulation and excessive consumption driving all things [eradicating insects] including climate change," he said.

Sánchez-Bayo said that he recently witnessed an insect to crash himself. A recent family holiday was involved in a 400-mile (700km) drive across rural Australia, but he never had once to clean the windscreen, he said. "Years ago you had to do it forever."

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