The global scientific community has established in its first report of the kind that insects around the world are growing smaller in numbers at a record pace. Over 40 percent of species are already in decline, and another one third are under direct threat. Compared to birds, reptiles and mammals, the rate of extinction is eight times quicker, declining by 2.5 percent each year.
Insects are crucial for the well-being – and existence as such – of the Earth’s ecosystems. Scientists conclude that such an alarming decline rate means that we are on the verge of a 6th mass extinction, which would have disastrous consequences. Puerto Rico and Germany are just the latest in the list of appalling insect-related reports, but the decline trend is global, researchers say. They also warn that insects would be gone completely in just several decades, if humanity will not change its food production processes.
The report also concludes that the driving force behind the rapid decline of the insect population is primarily intensive agriculture. Global warming and sprawling urbanization wreak their fair share of havoc, too.
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