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Almost all of the insects are gone in a Puerto Rican forest. Tourists may applaud the lack of bugs, but the collapse is a worrisome sign of how some environments are collapsing. The forests look like forests, but 98% of the ground bugs are gone in the last 35 years. 80% of the tree-top bugs are gone too. A casual glance by a first time visitor wouldn’t uncover anything dramatic, but a key part of the food chain has been eliminated. The effects seem to be cascading up, as well: fewer flying insects, fewer birds, etc. Climate change doesn’t affect every species by the same percentage. In this case it may be: first the bugs, then the birds, then the shrubs that aren’t being pollinated, then the trees. A similar situation is occurring in Germany. This may also be similar to the collapse of the minuscule life that creates coral reefs, plankton for fish, and who knows how many other environments that haven’t been properly studied. If it seems like there are fewer bugs bouncing off your car’s windshield, it’s probably not because something changed in car design. Why worry about bugs? Each is a separate species; and we’re a species, too.

One thought on “Puerto Rico Insect Collapse

  1. Pingback: Data That Matters January 2019 | Pretending Not To Panic

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