Is The “Insect Armageddon” Being Exaggerated?
There has been a lot of talk lately about the current dwindling insect population crisis. The crisis has been dramatically dubbed as the “insect armageddon”. News outlets have been reporting stories every day telling about this troubling insect population trend. The concern all started when researchers from Germany reported that the insect population within German nature reserves decreased by seventy five percent over the course of twenty seven years.
You don’t have to be a scientist to know that a world without insects would result in an ecological catastrophe that would end life on earth. But does this study really indicate that the end of life on earth is near? Although the German study is certainly alarming, it is after all, only one study. What do other scientists think about the study and its results? Are the concerns generated by this study legitimate?
The study was conducted by respected scientists, and the results of the study are certainly reliable. However, the study is limited to German nature reserves, and not the rest of the world. We have no way of knowing if insect populations are decreasing on a global scale, so it may be too early to panic. However, there is good reason to believe that global insect populations are decreasing. For example, a 2014 study reported that insect populations had declined by forty five percent at different monitored locations around the world.
Many scientists believe that panicking may be a little premature since the study does not identify the cause of the insect decline. A variety of factors could lead to a decrease in insect populations. For example, a decrease in vegetation or an increase in farm crops that only favor the survival of particular insects could cause a decrease in insect populations. But scientists have yet to pinpoint any solid causes. However, rapid deforestation could certainly result in a loss of insect life. Although it may be too early to claim that the end of days is among us, multiple studies have demonstrated results similar to the German study, and most scientists believe that a decline in insect life is, in fact, taking place.
Do you believe that a sharp increase in insect life will occur at some point in the future? Could this decrease in global insect life be a part of a natural cycle that scientists have yet to understand?