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It's gone even if it's still here

03 Jun 2020 | News Roundup

There are no bugs. You are just imagining them. At any rate, Scott Gilmore in Maclean’s says they have vanished and “Climate change has played a huge role”. It’s why there are no more ants, bees or grasshoppers. If you thought you saw one, it’s probably heatstroke.

According to Gilmore “There used to be bugs. Everywhere. My childhood was filled with bugs…. A long drive to see the grandparents meant a bug splattered windshield…. There were itchy mosquito bites on my legs in the summer. And, in the still evening air, there were dragonflies patrolling overhead… Remember all the butterflies? Or grasshoppers in a jar?... I am now 48 years old, and there are no bugs in my world. I didn’t realize it until this spring. I had assumed the unusual cold was to blame. Then it occurred to me I could not recall the last time I had seen a ladybug. Or the last time I swatted at a horsefly. There are no ants in my yard…. I have since learned this is a phenomena being experienced all around the world…. Last year a review of over 70 recent research projects from around the world concluded that insect numbers have fallen so fast that over 40 per cent of all species may be extinct within the next few decades. So what is killing all the bugs?”

Well, you can probably guess. He starts with a nuanced view: “Entomologists believe it is many things, that have been happening together over many years, which cumulatively reached a tipping point. Pesticides, of course, have intentionally wiped out a large portion of the insects we classified as pests (even though they all played a specific role in the ecosystem, and even though the chemicals killed many other insects unintentionally).” But of course, especially given the unusual cold, it’s clear that “Climate change has played a huge role. And, at the same time, around the world small farms have declined, reducing the number of fence lines and hedgerows. Decades of deforestation in the Amazon and in Asia have eliminated whole biomes. Wetlands have been drained. Even artificial lighting has wreaked havoc for bugs. The implications are so large, it is difficult to fully process it. The entire food chain, of the entire planet, depends on insects…. If this is another chapter marker in the history of the planet, be assured that the human story is not continued in the next. I don’t need to tell you what to think about this or what we need to do. We all know.”

Right. And we know what comes top of the list: “Lower carbon emission, regulate chemicals, protect ecosystems” even though with all those factors, lowering carbon emissions will accomplish nothing. He winds up “I just asked my nine year old son if he has ever seen a live grasshopper, outside of books and television. He didn’t even hesitate. ‘No, why?’”

Anecdotal evidence is notoriously unreliable, not least because people of a certain age who grew up in rural areas and now live in cities are thinking back not only to different times but completely different natural environments. For what it’s worth, we have ants in our backyard and mosquitoes. There is serious doubt about these “insectageddon” claims. From all sorts of sources. But if you say we destroyed the planet and blame climate change in large part, you just hit print and your article will appear in Maclean’s.

Of course when we say bugs are gone due to climate change, we also mean all the nasty horrible bugs are thriving and getting stronger. The kind that give you diseases are flourishing thanks to climate change, which only hurts good stuff. Like human rights. Even HIV, it turns out, is increased by climate change, driving poor people in poor countries to go work in the Middle East where they are sexually exploited. So says the Stanley Center for Peace and Security and would they lie? (Incidentally their argument apparently hinges on health being a human right.) As we already noted, climate change is supposedly going to unleash swarms of big cannibal wolf spiders. Also the peat bogs are going to go whoosh crackle releasing more CO2 causing temperature to increase etc. and we’re all going to die.

Anyway, check your backyard for ants. We bet you find some. And get bitten by mosquitoes while looking.

9 comments on “It's gone even if it's still here”

  1. Ha ha. I live in Atlantic Canada. We actually had to look for a place where we could not be bitten by mosquitos all day long in the summer. Still get eaten at dusk. The only way we found to have a tolerable amount of insects was to find a very open piece of land in a very windy place. As soon as it warms up, if I go into the forest - I'm a snack.
    Bugs disappearing? Not in my experience.

  2. I know where all the ants are. Medicine Hat and surrounding area. We have all of them, red and black, big and tiny. We try to kill them with Poison ( they thrive on Ant Killer) drown them etc, but they remain strong and continue to move mountains of sand from beneath various structures.

  3. Thank you for exposing this crap for what it is. I'd be glad to introduce Scott Gilmore and his deprived son to the black flies and mosquitoes in our back yard. The real danger is becoming desensitised to the lies and doublethink that is being spoon fed to the public by the Ministry of Truth.

  4. If you look at the "related articles" at the bottom of the page, you will see two about lots of mosquitoes:
    - Why your summer will be filled with mosquitoes.
    - Mosquitoes have killed millions...and it's about to get worse.
    Also something about using invasive insects in Newfoundland to protect ecosystems.
    On the other hand, there is clear evidence of a reduction in insects, not due to climate change, but to insecticides, and also herbicides that reduce the hedgerows that are friendly to insects. The Monarch butterfly is in danger of extinction due to the elimination of most of the milkweed in the US where they used to lay their eggs. The neonic infused shrubs sold in stores are also causing massive insect destruction, especially of bees. In the past during the spring I would have to stop at a gas station between fillups just to clean the mass of dead insects off the windshield. Also, one of my favorite birds here in Arizona was the Night Hawk, which would be seen darting around eating insects each spring . I used to sit quietly in my pool to watch them skim across the water for a quick sip. The last few years , I have not seen a single Night Hawk, which I presume is because their food supply is gone. I hope they have found enough insects to eat somewhere else, but my world is diminished without them!

  5. I saw a beautiful, irridescent blue dragonfly in my South London garden yesterday, and today I shooed a ladybug out of my lounge, then squashed a mozzie that had me on its menu...

  6. Plenty of 'bugs' round here! My window sills are covered with dead flies of all kinds which I killed with pyrethrum spray when they came inside. I get ants every summer & I've seen ladybirds & butterflies, moths, greenfly etc. Quite honestly, I would be quite pleased if the ants & greenfly went away. Many bugs, such as mosquitoes & cockroaches we can do without. It wouldn't worry me if they became extinct.

  7. No-one has mentioned the spread of emf radiation of which the latest version (that which shall not be named) is definitely an insect-destroyer. If you post anything mentioning it by name, those posts get less traction, or removed entirely. Just saying...

  8. No-one has mentioned the spread of emf radiation of which the latest version (that which shall not be named) is definitely an insect-destroyer. If you post anything mentioning it by name, those posts get less traction, or removed entirely. Just saying...
    Also, I wonder where this guy lives. Maybe he could plant some butterfly friendly shrubs, or cut down on sprays.

  9. After you’ve finished with Scott Gilmore in Canada, send him to Utah (United States). We can put his grandson and him on an island in the a Great Salt Lake. This will accomplish two things. They will be socially distanced reducing their risk of contracting CoVid 19 and, they will experience the joy of being carried off by swarms of gnats and other “ no see-ums “ while Mr Gilmore write his next articles Brine Shrimping or How I survived 101 days on an island eating insects that don’t exist and How Not To Write Articles That Insult People Who Have Sense and Intelligence. The sad thing about this fantasy of mine is that it sounds like Mr Gilmore would like die from insect exposure long before he got out of a Canada. I’d write more but I have to scratch the mosquito bite I got in the garden last night.

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