Where have all the insects gone?

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by jeremy h, Sep 25, 2017.

  1. jeremy h macrumors 6502

    Joined:
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    Location:
    UK
    #1
    Something that has dawned on me this summer is that when reading at night - light on and window open there have been practically no insects in the room. When I was growing up (a while ago now) you had a choice - window shut and swelter or window open and have a room completely full of annoying buzzing things (moths, daddy longlegs, little mozzy things etc etc).

    Also - these days my car even after a long drive in the summer is pretty much clear of insects. I remember in the past having to chuck a bucket of water over the front of the car to get rid of what was quite literally a covering of dead little blighters as otherwise they were a sod to get off when they dried out. (You could even buy special insect removing car shampoos).

    How are things in you part of the world? I appreciate this is all anecdotal but I'd be interested in what you think as from where I am it doesn't just feel like a silent spring but to have been a silent summer as well...
     
  2. HEK macrumors 68040

    HEK

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    Sep 24, 2013
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    US Eastern time zone
    #2
    I have noticed same thing in the US Midwest. Way less mosquitos and flys. Increased use of pesticides? Climate change? Just a down year for the little critters? Don’t really know. Wonder how the birds like swallows and insect bats are doing, that’s their food source.

    I know we have a bee crisis. They have been dying off in large numbers. Read an article about how billions of bees are trucked around the country, to pollinate crops. Never imagined that was going on.
     
  3. Zombie Acorn macrumors 65816

    Zombie Acorn

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    #3
    Just drove through the Midwest, unfortunately, my car didn't have the same experience.
     
  4. niploteksi macrumors regular

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    Dec 11, 2016
    #4
    Could be as simple as a dry year, we had a bug free summer here.
     
  5. jeremy h thread starter macrumors 6502

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    UK
    #5
    Yes, possibly and hope that's the case. But - I have noticed it here for a few years now but I wasn't sure if I wasn't just paying attention enough. So this year resolved to be a bit more observant and from what I can see it's actually pretty much insect free in my little tiny bit of the world these days. In September we would normally have had lots of drowsy wasps (on windfall apples etc) but even when consciously looking out for them there don't seem to be many around.
     
  6. Gutwrench Contributor

    Gutwrench

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    Jan 2, 2011
    #6
    It wasn’t dry in Minneapolis and yet it seemed like a pretty normal insect year. This area does a great job with mosquito control. But still, walk at dusk at your own risk.
     
  7. webbuzz macrumors 68000

    webbuzz

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  8. HEK, Sep 25, 2017
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2017

    HEK macrumors 68040

    HEK

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    #8
    Could be, yes. Almost zero mosquitoes in my yard this year. They do need standing water to breed.
     
  9. krause734 macrumors 6502a

    krause734

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  10. nebo1ss macrumors 68030

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    #10
    I do a lot of cycling along the canals near London. Wish I could say the same for the pesky little May flies that get me in the face.
     
  11. VulchR macrumors 68020

    VulchR

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    Scotland
    #11
    Pesticides possibly, and probably habitat destruction. I was crazy about bugs when I was a kid, so I know how to identify insects well. Each time I visit my folks near DC I notice a drop in the number and variety of insects I see. I used to see large insects all the time in Northern Virginia (praying mantises, katydids, locusts, large moths and butterflies, etc.) and now they're quite rare. I haven't seen a Luna moth in decades other than in zoos, and now seeing a Monarch butterfly is a rarity. The only insect that seems to be OK near DC are the cicadas... Mind you, when I was a kid, the flocks of migrating birds would stretch from horizon to horizon, and often would take many minutes to pass. Not any more. :(

    Honestly I do fear for the future.
     
  12. AlliFlowers Contributor

    AlliFlowers

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    Jan 1, 2011
    Location:
    L.A. (Lower Alabama)
    #12
    Gulf coast has the usual assortment of bugs. The city has been busy spraying for mosquitos, and I even found a small roach in the house that the cats had played with.
     
  13. D.T. macrumors G3

    D.T.

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    Vilano Beach, FL
    #13
    If anyone wants some mosquitoes, we have an _ample_ supply, please come to Florida and take a few ... or a lot ... or ALL of them. ;)
     
  14. TheHateMachine macrumors 6502a

    TheHateMachine

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    Santa Fe, TX
    #14
    Seemed normal here down in Texas. Mosquitos seem to have been down due to aggressive spraying via truck. However that all changed after Harvey. It got so bad they basically flew a cargo plane over Houston and dropped pesticide.

    [​IMG]
     
  15. jeremy h thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #15
    Ha - you lot never do anything by halves - that's one big can of fly spray!

    Sounds like the US's bugs are holding up...
     
  16. HEK macrumors 68040

    HEK

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    #16
    Shades of agent orange :confused:
     
  17. yaxomoxay macrumors 68040

    yaxomoxay

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    Texas
    #17
    Texas here. Opened the door for a minute last night. My house is basically a colony for superbugs right now, and my three cats are way too lazy to do anything about it.
     
  18. HEK macrumors 68040

    HEK

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    #18
    Sounds more like a cat problem than a bug problem.:D
     
  19. MacNut macrumors Core

    MacNut

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    CT
    #19
    Isn’t that Trumps tanning brand.
     
  20. yaxomoxay macrumors 68040

    yaxomoxay

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    Texas
    #20
    Cats blame the owner, and bugs are fine with it. Seems like the human is going to lose this time ;)
     
  21. HEK macrumors 68040

    HEK

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    #21
    Yeah, you right didn’t of that. Good call.
     
  22. jpietrzak8 macrumors 65816

    jpietrzak8

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    Dayton, Ohio
    #22
    Report from Ohio -- mosquitos do seem to be low this year, but there hasn't really been an abundance of rain. Lots of houseflies though. Plenty of cicadas. And at least where I am living, a bumper crop of fireflies this year! Going out around midnight in June, it looked like I had placed Christmas lights on my trees, with the fireflies covering them... ;)
     
  23. macduke macrumors G4

    macduke

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    Central U.S.
    #23
    My Outback is completely coated in bugs driving back from KC last night. It's kinda gross.
     
  24. MadeTheSwitch macrumors 6502a

    MadeTheSwitch

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    Apr 20, 2009
    #24
    My personal experience: less flies, more ants.

    We always have at least two or three flies get into the house each summer. This year, nothing. The ants made their annual march upon the house though and did so a month and a half earlier than they used to. I had to resort to aggressive countermeasures and it worked...I kept them at bay this year. They never got to the kitchen! I'm rather proud of that. :D
     
  25. VulchR macrumors 68020

    VulchR

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    Scotland
    #25
    One of the many things I miss about the US while living in the UK. I still remember the day as a kid when somebody bust my bubble about those critters being harmless (apparently some emit light to lure other species and eat them).
     

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64 September 25, 2017