"Insect decline in the Anthropocene: Death by a thousand cuts"

Really important and interesting series of papers in PNAS:


And you can watch the presentations here: https://www.entsoc.org/insect-decline-anthropocene

"Nature is under siege. In the last 10,000 y the human population has grown from 1 million to 7.8 billion. Much of Earth’s arable lands are already in agriculture (1), millions of acres of tropical forest are cleared each year (2, 3), atmospheric CO2 levels are at their highest concentrations in more than 3 million y (4), and climates are erratically and steadily changing from pole to pole, triggering unprecedented droughts, fires, and floods across continents. Indeed, most biologists agree that the world has entered its sixth mass extinction event, the first since the end of the Cretaceous Period 66 million y ago, when more than 80% of all species, including the nonavian dinosaurs, perished.

Ongoing losses have been clearly demonstrated for better-studied groups of organisms. Terrestrial vertebrate population sizes and ranges have contracted by one-third, and many mammals have experienced range declines of at least 80% over the last century (5). A 2019 assessment suggests that half of all amphibians are imperiled (2.5% of which have recently gone extinct) (6). Bird numbers across North America have fallen by 2.9 billion since 1970 (7). Prospects for the world’s coral reefs, beyond the middle of this century, could scarcely be more dire (8). A 2020 United Nations report estimated that more than a million species are in danger of extinction over the next few decades (9), but also see the more bridled assessments in refs. 10 and 11.

Although a flurry of reports has drawn attention to declines in insect abundance, biomass, species richness, and range sizes (e.g., refs. 12⇓⇓⇓⇓⇓–18; for reviews see refs. 19 and 20), whether the rates of declines for insects are on par with or exceed those for other groups remains unknown. There are still too little data to know how the steep insect declines reported for western Europe and California’s Central Valley—areas of high human density and activity—compare to population trends in sparsely populated regions and wildlands. Long-term species-level demographic data are meager from the tropics, where considerably more than half of the world’s insect species occur (21, 22). To consider the state of knowledge about the global status of insects, the Entomological Society of America hosted a symposium at their Annual Meeting in St. Louis, Missouri, in November 2019. The Society was motivated to do so by the many inquiries about the validity of claims of rapid insect decline that had been received in the months preceding the annual meeting and by the many discussions taking place among members. The entomological community was in need of a thorough review and the annual meeting provided a timely opportunity for sharing information.

The goal of the symposium was to assemble world experts on insect biodiversity and conservation and ask them to report on the state of knowledge of insect population trends. Speakers were asked to identify major data gaps, call attention to limitations of existing data, and evaluate principal stressors underlying declines, with one goal being to catalyze activities aimed at mitigating well-substantiated declines. All 11 talks were recorded and are available on the Entomological Society of America’s website, https://www.entsoc.org/insect-decline-anthropocene. Although this special PNAS volume is anchored to the St. Louis presentations, that effort is extended here to include new data, ideas, expanded literature reviews, and many additional coauthors."

פורסם על-ידי sambiology sambiology, פברואר 07, 2021 03:59 אחה"צ



This is depressing.

פורסם על-ידי jaquiring לפני 3 חודשים (סמן)

Thanks for posting these links. It's appreciated.

פורסם על-ידי veganschmegan לפני 3 חודשים (סמן)

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