bee regressive, bee-yee regressive
What happens when you reach out...and there's no one to tag in?
Among the big societal and environmental stressors that will come out of global warming will be a big fat spike in the rate of extinction and/or decline in plant and animal species around the world:
A temperature rise of 1 degree Celsius from the end of the twentieth century will leave up to 30 percent of species at risk of extinction, and from 4 degrees, there will be ``significant extinctions around the globe,'' the scientists said with high confidence.
It's a sure bet that we'll lose a lot of the "Cadillac" species - animals and such that need lots of food, lots of range, and occupy top slots in their ecosystems, animals like polar bears, grizzlies, and elephants. But we were doing a pretty good job of flattening these ecosystems and needlessly killing them off without the kinds of impacts that come from changing the climate.
To quote Burgess Meredith, the thing of it is, though, the thing of it is we don't get to pick which species to exterminate. I was told back when I was waiting tables that there was a place for everything, and everything has it's place. The same might be said for ecosystems, both large and small - and disrupting a system as big and often as unpredictable as the climate system can lead to some rather unexpected, and therefore rather catastrophic changes: things that had a place lose that place. And so and thus, this little tidbit, which has popped up in more than a couple of places, should give us reason to pause:
The been industry swarmed Capital Hill looking for help to unravel the mystery of what is happening to the bees.
"We need more beekeeping research. Today we need that money. We don't need it tomorrow, we need it today," said David Ellingson.
Twenty-seven states from New York to California now report disappearing bee colonies.
Bee keepers estimate that 600,000 colonies of the 2.4 million nationwide have been affected; some are scrambling to survive.
And why, exactly? Quoth Wilson:
These little things are so small that most people don't even know they exist. Yet if we didn't have pollinators, the plant world would deteriorate rapidly. That would also mean the disappearance of a large part of the life on Earth on which human beings depend. It's (the little things in) this world--literally at our feet, or buzzing around our heads--that keep us alive...If we didn't have pollinators, the diversity of plants, including many crops on which human life depends, would disappear. All the animals that depend on the flowering plants for food and shelter would also disappear. There would be a general collapse of life on land. [emphasis Dex's]
UPDATE: More on our obvious hatred for Animalslamofascism here from the Christian Science Monitor.