Thursday, May 14, 2009

Take Care of Our Insects Please!

Bumblebee filled with lots of pollen (click to enlarge)

The scientists in Denmark keep an eye on the insect-population like they do in many other countries. Many Danish insect species disappear, including butterflies and bumble bees. Six species of the bumblebee in Denmark have disappeared during the last 50 years, according to senior-scientist Per Kryger at Århus University. Those six species account for a fourth of the bumblebee-species in Denmark, and they will never come back. He estimates that there is a similar decline among the other 230 bee-species , and several butterflies and mosquitos are dying out. Although the bees and mosquitos are known for their smarting and itching bites, they are necessary in order to pollinate trees and plants so they can give apples, tomatoes and other good things.

The scientists are of the opinion that the importance of insects in general is strongly underestimated. Too few insects mean large increasing costs on common fruit and vegetables. Internationally is reckoned that the economic value of the insect pollination is about 1.125 billion kroner (= ab. 8 billion dollars). In Denmark the insects increase the production with two billion kroner, estimates Per Kryger.

The agriculture is the big culprit when it is about the extermination of insects. Pesticides and field-exploitation destroy the places where the insects live and breed. Large parts of Denmark are put under the plough and herbicides wipe out the important insect-plants.
Source: metroXpress 23. April 2009

Other things have showed to be a danger. The scent of flowers is threatened by pollution. The pollution mixes with the flowerscent and drown out the scent-trace which bees and other pollinating insects use in order to find their way to the flowers. This according to an investigation from University of Virginia in Usa (from Magasine "FoodCulture") The weaker the trace gets the harder it will be for the insects to find the plants meaning that the insects gather less nourishment - and then there will be fewer insects in the future. Last but not least it can prevent flowers from propagate, which means that they die out.
Source: metroXpress 12. May 2009.

When we then add to all this that the Danish farmers now are allowed to cultivate more fallow fields which are important living and breeding places for the insects then it looks bad for the future of the insects.

Furthermore the farmers are now allowed to put more pigs in their stables, the same size of stables with more pigs! There are places in the countryside where there are far too many pig-farms in an area - and from where you have to take flight if you're so unlucky to arrive on a day when they're spreading out slurry. This could at least be minimized, but instead it's growing worse.
Source: from the TV-press and my own experience on several occasions.

photo Store Økssø 2. May 2009: grethe bachmann

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