Several species of beautiful butterflies are at risk of dying off if there is not a human intervention, and soon. Reportedly, just like bumblebees and polar bears, some butterflies are dying off in record numbers due to their drought-sensitivity that has been constantly put to the test with climate change. A new study finds the six British butterflies that are threatened by climate change due to global warming are the Pieris brassicae, Peiris rapae, Aphantopus hyperantus, Pieris napi, Pararge aegeria, and Ocholodes sylvonus.
Through the research, it was discovered the number of butterflies that are dying can be significantly decreased by the creation of a fabricated greenhouse environment in which the right temperatures and gas emissions are ever present for the butterflies health. Recently, the lead author of the study, Tim Oliver, made a statement on his worries for the British butterfly population.
“The results are worrying. Until I started this research, I hadn’t quite realised the magnitude and potential impacts from climate change. To limit these losses, both habitat restoration and reducing CO2 emissions have a role. In fact, a combination of both is necessary.”
The study, which focuses on butterflies, actually touches on the full scale of damage climate change can have on all animal species. The effects of climate change based on the research will be a huge decline in the animal population.
“There is strong evidence that climate change will have increasingly large impacts on biodiversity. This is especially so from increases in the frequency of extreme events, although t he impacts of these have been less studied than responses to gradual changes in climatological means. Species responses to climate can be highly nonlinear, with threshold effects of extreme weather events, and in particular droughts, causing population collapse”
Although, the study finds that the damage has been done, a lot of it is reversible. The researcher stated that much can be done by humans to ensure climate change doesn’t deplete the planet of butterflies or any other species of animal. Unfortunately, a deeper look at the study’s data reveals that without any human intervention, species of butterflies will die off in numbers so great that there will be no ability to reverse the effects of global warming.
“Depending on recovery times relative to event frequency, repeat events may mean that populations are ultimately unable to recover fully from each subsequent collapse, thereby leading to local extinction. However, interactions with landscape characteristics provide potential opportunities for climate change adaptat ion. Habitat restorations may reduce t he degree of population collapse in response to extreme events and also aid recover.”
The study on the state of British butterfly lives is published in the Nature Climate Change journal. According to the New York Times, at the rate that global warming is worsening, the six species of butterflies could be extinct by 2050.
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