This article discusses a 76
The article ruled out global warming because they could not associate the decline with any climate factor. They also ruled out habitat loss because they surveyed protected areas.
The only thing that they could conclude was causing the insect decline was pesticides, as all of these areas were surrounded by agricultural lands. They also listed fertilizers, but it’s beyond me how this causes declines in insects. Herbicides are also known to cause insect declines.
The US EPA has utterly failed to regulate pesticides as it is controlled by agricultural corporations who make these chemicals. I can’t remember the last time they banned a chemical. Glyphosate herbicide should definitely be banned as it causes lymphoma. The EPA refuses to ban it! Neonicanoid or neonic pesticides are causing horrendous declines in bees. I believe that the EU has banned these pesticides.
The EPA has documented the disastrous effect of these chemicals on insect life but they have stubbornly refused to ban them. As I said, in the US, corporations run society and run the government. The corporations and the rich are over the state instead of the other way around. They run the show here. The state is just a slave of the corporations that does everything they order it to. It’s a colossal failure of the American capitalist system.
The stater is simply unable to regulate the capitalists.
Fisheries councils are packed with fishermen and they routinely preside over disastrous declines in fish stocks, only stepping in when the stock is down to 5
Jerry Brown, our last governor, refused to regulate the oil companies in this state. As you can see, the EPA is stocked with chemical industry people, so it utterly fails to regulate agricultural toxins. Theoretically, the state is supposed to regulate the corporations but in our system, the corporations simply take over the state and all of its regulatory agencies. There is continuous turnover with industry people going to work for regulatory agencies and regulators leaving to go work in the industry they were regulating.
Things don’t get much better under Democrats, though they do improve.
It is quite depressing that I almost never see bugs or insects of any kind anymore, at least here in this city. We are surrounded by agricultural fields which spray their crops with insecticides and herbicides. I suspect that this is the reason for the declines. My manager sprays insecticides in the complex every now and again, and every time she does that, we find lots of dead bees.
The neonicanoid or neonic pesticides are the worst of all and are known bee-killers. Further, insectivorous birds now show high levels of neonics. Even the herbicide Glyphosate, which absolutely causes lymphoma, has been known to reduce insect populations and even adversely effect birds.
By the way, I never see any good birds anymore. When I lived in the Sierras, the first year I moved up there, that whole area was flooded with birds. Damn birds were everywhere you looked, on the ground, in trees, in the air. Acorn woodpeckers, flickers, screech owls, horned owls, various warblers, white-breasted nuthatches, pygmy nuthatches, hairy woodpeckers, scrub jays, brown towhees, rufous-sided towhees, robins, and God knows what else were everywhere you looked, and birdsong filled the air with what was frankly a raucous chorus. I lived there for 15 years. Every year there were fewer and fewer birds.
I also noticed an incredible array of insects when I first moved there. There was a Himalayan blackberry bush on the property and I used to go out there and look at the insects. One thing that I marveled at was the unbelievable variety of what appeared to be bees using the flowers of the plant. There are 2,000 native bees in the US, so I assume this is what I was looking at.
There were also lots of ants, so many that they became a serious problem one year when they invaded the house. At nighttime, moths and other bugs would swarm the outdoor lights, many dying in the process. June bugs and all sorts of other weird looking beetles were also attracted to the lights and could be seen on the screen door in the back at night. Some nights there might be 20 beetles and bugs on that damned screen!
I saw bugs I hadn’t seen in forever, like walking sticks and praying mantises.
These bugs were ubiquitous when I was growing up in the the Southern California suburb where I lived until the mid-60’s. The whole world was literally crawling with damned insects. The mantises were so common that we used to catch them and put them in these plastic cages. You had to feed them live flies and moths, as that was all they would eat. We somehow figured out how to catch live flies and moths! They only lived about three weeks before they died.
In this city where I live, as I noted, there are almost zero bugs of any kind. Hell, I’d be happy to see some flies! Which reminds me, we used to have a lot of different kinds of flies. Now we just have lousy houseflies, but there used to be blue-bottle flies, green-bottle flies, and even monsters called horseflies.
Bees, including huge bumblebees, and other stinging bugs were everywhere and were a huge problem because we grew apricot and plum fruit trees in the backyard and a lot of the fruit fell on the ground and rotted, which attracted a lot of stinging bugs.
All sorts of wasps, yellowjackets, hornets, and other stingers were around. In fact many a picnic was ruined by these damned pests, especially the yellowjackets. Paper wasps regularly made nests on our property, sometimes on our house. You had to watch out for them. I lived in the capital of California one summer as a boy. We had to deal with vast swarms of gnats, no-see-ums, and midges that swarmed around the Sacramento River right outside our apartment.
In addition to a lack of insects, we also have almost zero birds in this town, though I’m starting to hear some now. We have lots of pigeons and there are some house sparrows that nest here. You do hear mockingbirds. But all of these birds are notorious for being well-adapted to urban settings. I did see a magpie recently. And I had the luck to see a Cooper’s hawk twice. They live in our city, preying on the pigeons.
Worldwide, insect declines are being caused by various factors or combinations of factors such as habitat loss, pesticides (the major factor in colder climates), and global warming (a huge factor in the tropics). If insects go extinct, all of humanity will follow them.
I honestly think that modern capitalist society is suicidal!