The researchers measured the forest’s insects and other invertebrates, including spiders and centipedes by using trap methods with sticky plates and nets in the canopy. They collected the critters and larvae that crawled through the vegetation and examined the density of population. Each technique revealed that the dry weight of the captured insects were very less when compared to 1976. The researchers observed that there has been a significant decline in the population of insects of all species since 1976. Moreover, the catch rate of insects in sticky ground traps reduced by 60-fold when compared between January 1977 and January 2013.
The researchers measured the biomass of anole lizards, which feeds on arthropods, and found that it dropped by more than 30 percent since 1970s. The findings were published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences on October 15, 2018.
David Wagner, an expert in invertebrate conservation at the University of Connecticut who was not involved with this research, said, “the study in PNAS is a real wake-up call – a clarion call – that the phenomenon could be much, much bigger, and across many more ecosystems.”
Source: Industry Chronicle, 28 December 2018