This Friday, October 29th, from 12–1pm, we will discuss the linked article at our next weekly Journal Club meeting. The article is titled “More than 75 percent decline over 27 years in total flying insect biomass in protected areas”, and will be presented by STEM Research intern Wes Walsh.
Abstract: Global declinesin insects have sparked wide interest among scientists, politicians, and thegeneral public. Loss of insect diversity and abundance is expected to provokecascading effects on food webs and to jeopardize ecosystem services. Ourunderstanding of the extent and underlying causes of this decline is based onthe abundance of single species or taxonomic groups only, rather than changesin insect biomass which is more relevant for ecological functioning. Here, weused a standardized protocol to measure total insect biomass using Malaisetraps, deployed over 27 years in 63 nature protection areas in Germany (96unique location-year combinations) to infer on the status and trend of localentomofauna. Our analysis estimates a seasonal decline of 76%, and mid-summerdecline of 82% in flying insect biomass over the 27 years of study. We showthat this decline is apparent regardless of habitat type, while changes inweather, land use, and habitat characteristics cannot explain this overalldecline. This yet unrecognized loss of insect biomass must be taken intoaccount in evaluating declines in abundance of species depending on insects asa food source, and ecosystem functioning in the European landscape.
Meeting ID: 549 554 5262
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