Instagram – February 18th, 2019

Don’t forget the small things… 🐜 🕷
#Repost @africanparksnetwork with @get_repost
A global review has just announced that plummeting insect numbers may ‘threaten the collapse of nature’. @TheGuardian details how insects could vanish within a century at the current rate of decline, threatening a “catastrophic collapse of nature’s ecosystems”. More than 40% of insect species are declining, and a third are endangered, the scientific analysis published in the journal Biological Conservation found. The rate of extinction is eight times faster than that of mammals, birds and reptiles. The total mass of insects is falling by a steep 2.5% a year, according to the best data available, suggesting they could vanish within a century. The planet is at the start of a sixth mass extinction in its history, with huge losses already reported in larger animals that are easier to study. But insects are by far the most varied and abundant animals, outweighing humanity by 17 times. They are “essential” for the proper functioning of all ecosystems, the researchers say, as food for other creatures, pollinators and recyclers of nutrients. The analysis reported that intensive agriculture is the main driver of the declines, particularly the heavy use of pesticides, urbanisation and climate change are also significant factors. Inside the world’s protected areas there are 15% more individual plants and animals and 11% more species inside than outside protected areas, according to the largest analysis of biodiversity in terrestrial globally protected areas to date. Protected areas have the potential to help us conserve some of the most biodiverse regions on Earth – which is why they need increased global support. With 10.5 million hectares of protected areas currently under management, African Parks is ensuring that we save some of the most ecologically diverse areas on this planet. Photo: @burrardlucas #africanparks #liuwa #landscape #africa #insect #conservation