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Bad News Department: Catastrophic Declines in Europe of Insect and Bird Populations


Scientific surveys of bird populations in France showed dramatic declines, between one-third and two-thirds, over several decades.  This finding follows research in Germany that showed declines of 80 percent in insect populations over the last 40 years.  Scientists suspect agricultural practices have caused the drops.  Birds eat insects, so the loss of insects might cause bird populations to collapse.  The bad news was reported in an article in the New York Times.

The recent (over the last ten years) collapse of many bee populations in the United States may be related to the collapses reported in Europe.  No direct relationship has been found.

Nonetheless, we should view these population collapses with alarm.  As time passes, more and more ecosystems on Earth are damaged or degraded.  This is not a pleasant thought.  It is all epitomized by global warming and the great plastic patch in the Pacific ocean.  The root cause is overpopulation and consequent overuse of the Earth’s resources.  Drastic changes in resource use and conservation are needed to prevent ecological collapse.

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