Francisco Sanchez-Bayo: I think we can, because first of all the dataset is big enough to allow some statistical analysis. But the causes, the drivers that we analyse in Europe can be extrapolated to other parts of the world. Deforestation is the same.
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Climate change is not the same actually, that's the only factor that maybe is different. All the others, the agricultural intensification is the same. We use the same techniques in Europe or in Australia or in Africa, it's going to have the same consequences obviously.
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Carl Smith: When we use the term 'insects' we are actually talking about an incredibly diverse bundle of species across many different taxonomic groups. How are each of the individual taxa surviving or not surviving? Francisco Sanchez-Bayo: All the groups have a certain number of species who are increasing, and that's because they are tolerant of the conditions they find, whether they are pesticides or pollutants, they are tolerant to climate change. Carl Smith: One of the other things you looked at in this paper was that we are seeing average annual biomass losses of all insects of around 2.
You've then used that to look ahead to what happens in 10, 50 and years, and it's a very grim picture. Francisco Sanchez-Bayo: It is. Now, those numbers were got from three studies, one in the UK, one in Puerto Rico and one in Germany. The one in Puerto Rico and the one in Germany covered only the last 30 years, and that's the rate of decline for the last 30 years. That rate of decline of biomass, we didn't have that rate before, so that's why we point out the change in the agricultural practices in the last years as the main reason.
And the rate of decline is not exponential as we normally see in other things, its constant, it's linear. And in years we won't see any insects, but maybe even before that because if we continue at this rate, in maybe 10 or 15 years there will be none.
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It's not that it will happen in the far away future, it's happening now. So I don't think we are alarmists at all, we are just ringing the bells very loudly so that everyone listens. Carl Smith: So it's based on two studies that we know, that three-quarters are gone.
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Francisco Sanchez-Bayo: Of course, and because of that it's a very small sample to study so we cannot be sure for that. Carl Smith: Could you tell me what needs to happen to try to protect the insects that are at risk? Francisco Sanchez-Bayo: It's not just the chemicals we are using, that's part of it, and that can be regulated, but it's mostly the management of the agricultural systems.
We have to revive integrated pest management techniques which are very diverse, including crop rotation, minimise the number of monocultures, one crop in one area, just trying to diversify the number of crops that you have, diversify also the vegetation in the area, and go back to using the natural enemies and the parasitoids that are there to control the pests in the first place. And use insecticides only when we need them. John Krissilas. On the Streets for Alison. Paul Matos. The Bully's Secret. Al Rhea. We All Die! PD Musso. Robert C.
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