Insect populations: in decline or better at hiding?

Some very interesting new research studies ‘sheds new light’ on collecting insect population data:


and a silent appeal for dark skies at night. Bring back our stars (as we do when Cape Town has loadshedding at night)


I’m curious to know if this relates to orbweavers constructing their webs near light sources. Has their behaviour changed within the last 2 centuries?

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Good question. I have two spiders next to porch lights that I turn on for moth-watching. One has a web in the eaves (very productive spot for her) and the other is a Kukulcania arizonica that hides in a stucco crevice. There’s also a small western black widow web on the floor of my porch area.

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They seem to waste no time building webs along my string lights whenever I’m camping, too.

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It might be also that insects have started to avoid lights, but the decline is there. The “Krefeld study” found a decline of more than 75% of flying insects over 27 years. Flying insects were caught in malaise traps, which do not have light.


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