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Thursday, 25 April 2019

Insect apocalypse

We have all seen Monarch butterflies on TV programmes and the vast numbers that migrate across America. Yet scientists have found their population has fallen by 90% in 20 years, a loss of 900 million individuals.

This is an extract from a New York Times article which is titled

It is a long article but anyone who persists in reading it to the end will be appalled and frightened at what is happening to species throughout the world. E.O. Wilson, the naturalist and prophet of environmental degradation has suggested we are living in the Eremocine, the age of loneliness.

Climate change may play a part in this but a large part is human degradation of ecosystems. Perhaps we should ask our Council to declare "No further loss of species numbers" to complement their "Climate Change Emergency". But I rather sense the former would not gain any traction.

We are on a treadmill and the old Chinese proverb is a warning, 
"He who catches a tiger by the tail can never let go".

1 comment:

  1. Tigers, Giant Pandas, Large colourful butterflies - often termed "flagship species" are often assumed to incidentally protect the whole ecosystem they live in. But to get the required groundswell of public opinion behind flies and their maggoty juveniles is far from likely at the moment I think. Witness the recent "Life Scientific" on Radio 4 when the male interviewer couldn't hide his revulsion at flies while interviewing the lady biologist from the British Museum who is Head of Flies and Fleas (Diptera and Siphonoptera?) People are so short-sighted. We must keep calling for "No further loss of species"- you're right Philip.