According to a report in the Guardian on Wednesday, a study of the number of insect splashes in cars shows that the number of insects in many parts of Europe has fallen sharply over the past few years. A survey in the UK last year asked some people to put a sampling grid on their license plates to record the number of insect splashes. The study, which looked at about 700 car rides, found that insects splashed on the sampling board were 50 percent lower in 2019 than in 2004.
The findings coincide with other concerns about a decline in global insect populations. “However, since this study is based on observations of two points in time, more years of data are needed to determine the direction of any trend,” the study said. It does not constitute a decline in itself. “
Another Danish study, which looked at data collected every summer between 1997 and 2017, found that insect abundance had declined by 80 per cent. The data used in the study came from an average of 65 driving tests of the same speed on the same road each summer.
A global scientific review published last year suggested that the decline in insect populations could have disastrous consequences for ecosystems, especially given that insects pollinate three-quarters of crops. Pesticides, climate change and the destruction of natural habitats are all thought to be contributing to the decline in insect populations.