Beneficial insects may be declining

Beneficial flying insects such as native bees, moths, butterflies and others seem to be less abundant than usual, while pests such as mosquitoes, disease carrying ticks, cockroaches and others are doing well. But since scientists haven’t counted flying insect populations in the past, they can’t compare today’s numbers today to past populations. Still, scientists believe fewer beneficial insects exist across the globe, which is especially a concern because these insects are important for 80 percent of people’s food sources. Scientists point to habitat loss, insecticide use, killing of native weeds, single crop agriculture, invasive species, climate change and other reasons for these declines.

Read more in The Associated Press.

Header Image: While pests seem to be increasing, beneficial insects such as the tiger swallowtail (Papilio glaucus) don’t appear to be doing as well. ©Allen Sheffield