Insects Disappearing

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Insects Disappearing

Postby Miranda » 22 Oct 2018, 10:37

ENVIRONMENT
Insects Are Rapidly Disappearing Around The World, Leaving Scientists Horrified
"This is one of the most disturbing articles I have ever read."

BEN GUARINO, THE WASHINGTON POST
19 OCT 2018
Insects around the world are in a crisis, according to a small but growing number of long-term studies showing dramatic declines in invertebrate populations.
A new report suggests that the problem is more widespread than scientists realized. Huge numbers of bugs have been lost in a pristine national forest in Puerto Rico, the study found, and the forest's insect-eating animals have gone missing, too.

In 2014, an international team of biologists estimated that, in the past 35 years, the abundance of invertebrates such as beetles and bees had decreased by 45 percent.
In places where long-term insect data are available, mainly in Europe, insect numbers are plummeting.
A study last year showed a 76 percent decrease in flying insects in the past few decades in German nature preserves.
The latest report, published Monday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, shows that this startling loss of insect abundance extends to the Americas.
The study's authors implicate climate change in the loss of tropical invertebrates.
"This study in PNAS is a real wake-up call - a clarion call - that the phenomenon could be much, much bigger, and across many more ecosystems," said David Wagner, an expert in invertebrate conservation at the University of Connecticut who was not involved with this research.
He added: "This is one of the most disturbing articles I have ever read."
Bradford Lister, a biologist at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in New York, has been studying rain forest insects in Puerto Rico since the 1970s.

If Puerto Rico is the island of enchantment - "la isla del encanto" - then its rain forest is "the enchanted forest on the enchanted isle", he said.
Birds and coqui frogs trill beneath a 50-foot-tall (15 metre tall) emerald canopy. The forest, named El Yunque, is well-protected. Spanish King Alfonso XII claimed the jungle as a 19th-century royal preserve.
Decades later, Theodore Roosevelt made it a national reserve, and El Yunque remains the only tropical rain forest in the National Forest system.
"We went down in '76, '77 expressly to measure the resources: the insects and the insectivores in the rain forest, the birds, the frogs, the lizards," Lister said.
He came back nearly 40 years later, with his colleague Andrés García, an ecologist at the National Autonomous University of Mexico. What the scientists did not see on their return troubled them.
"Boy, it was immediately obvious when we went into that forest," Lister said. Fewer birds flitted overhead. The butterflies, once abundant, had all but vanished.
García and Lister once again measured the forest's insects and other invertebrates, a group called arthropods that includes spiders and centipedes. The researchers trapped arthropods on the ground in plates covered in a sticky glue, and raised several more plates about three feet into the canopy. The researchers also swept nets over the brush hundreds of times, collecting the critters that crawled through the vegetation.

Each technique revealed the biomass (the dry weight of all the captured invertebrates) had significantly decreased from 1976 to the present day.
The sweep sample biomass decreased to a fourth or an eighth of what it had been. Between January 1977 and January 2013, the catch rate in the sticky ground traps fell 60-fold.
"Everything is dropping," Lister said. The most common invertebrates in the rain forest - the moths, the butterflies, the grasshoppers, the spiders and others - are all far less abundant.
"Holy crap," Wagner said of the 60-fold loss.
Louisiana State University entomologist Timothy Schowalter, who is not an author of the recent report, has studied this forest since the 1990s.
The new research is consistent with his data, as well as the European biomass studies. "It takes these long-term sites, with consistent sampling across a long period of time, to document these trends," he said. "I find their data pretty compelling."
The study authors also trapped anole lizards, which eat arthropods, in the rain forest. They compared these numbers with counts from the 1970s.

Anole biomass dropped by more than 30 percent. Some anole species have altogether disappeared from the interior forest.
Insect-eating frogs and birds plummeted, too. Another research team used mist nets to capture birds in 1990, and again in 2005. Captures fell by about 50 percent.
Garcia and Lister analyzed the data with an eye on the insectivores. The ruddy quail dove, which eats fruits and seeds, had no population change. A brilliant green bird called the Puerto Rican tody, which eats bugs almost exclusively, diminished by 90 percent.
The food web appears to have been obliterated from the bottom. It's credible that the authors link the cascade to arthropod loss, Schowalter said, because "you have all these different taxa showing the same trends - the insectivorous birds, frogs and lizards - but you don't see those among seed-feeding birds."
Lister and Garcia attribute this crash to climate. In the same 40-year period as the arthropod crash, the average high temperature in the rain forest increased by 4 degrees Fahrenheit (2.2 degrees Celsius). The temperatures in the tropics stick to a narrow band.
The invertebrates that live there, likewise, are adapted to these temperatures and fare poorly outside them; bugs cannot regulate their internal heat.
A recent analysis of climate change and insects, published in August in the journal Science, predicts a decrease in tropical insect populations, according to an author of that study, Scott Merrill, who studies crop pests at the University of Vermont.
In temperate regions farther from the equator, where insects can survive a wider range of temperatures, agricultural pests will devour more food as their metabolism increases, Merrill and his co-authors warned.
But after a certain thermal threshold, insects will no longer lay eggs, he said, and their internal chemistry breaks down.
The authors of a 2017 study of vanished flying insects in Germany suggested other possible culprits, including pesticides and habitat loss. Arthropods around the globe also have to contend with pathogens and invasive species.
"It's bewildering, and I'm scared to death that it's actually death by a thousand cuts," Wagner said. "One of the scariest parts about it is that we don't have an obvious smoking gun here."
A particular danger to these arthropods, in his view, was not temperature but droughts and lack of rainfall.
Lister pointed out that, since 1969, pesticide use has fallen more than 80 percent in Puerto Rico. He does not know what else could be to blame.
The study authors used a recent analytic method, invented by a professor of economics at Fordham University, to assess the role of heat.
"It allows you to place a likelihood on variable X causing variable Y," Lister said. "So we did that and then five out of our six populations we got the strongest possible support for heat causing those decreases in abundance of frogs and insects."
The authors sorted out the effects of weather like hurricanes and still saw a consistent trend, Schowalter said, which makes a convincing case for climate.
"If anything, I think their results and caveats are understated. The gravity of their findings and ramifications for other animals, especially vertebrates, is hyperalarming," Wagner said.
But he is not convinced that climate change is the global driver of insect loss.
"The decline of insects in northern Europe precedes that of climate change there," he said. "Likewise, in New England, some tangible declines began in the 1950s."
No matter the cause, all of the scientists agreed that more people should pay attention to the bugpocalypse.
"It's a very scary thing," Merrill said, that comes on the heels of a "gloomy, gloomy" UN report that estimated the world has little more than a decade left to wrangle climate change under control.
But "we can all step up," he said, by using more fuel-efficient cars and turning off unused electronics.
The Portland-based Xerces Society, a nonprofit environmental group that promotes insect conservation, recommends planting a garden with native plants that flower throughout the year.
"Unfortunately, we have deaf ears in Washington," Schowalter said. But those ears will listen at some point, he said, because our food supply will be in jeopardy.
Thirty-five percent of the world's plant crops require pollination by bees, wasps and other animals. And arthropods are more than just pollinators. They're the planet's wee custodians, toiling away in unnoticed or avoided corners.
They chew up rotting wood and eat carrion. "And none of us want to have more carcasses around," Schowalter said. Wild insects provide US$57 billion worth of six-legged labor in the United States each year, according to a 2006 estimate.
The loss of insects and arthropods could further rend the rain forest's food web, Lister warned, causing plant species to go extinct without pollinators.
"If the tropical forests go it will be yet another catastrophic failure of the whole Earth system," he said, "that will feed back on human beings in an almost unimaginable way."
2018 © The Washington Post
This article was originally published by The Washington Post.
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Re: Insects Disappearing

Postby HBS Guy » 22 Oct 2018, 13:14

Have read similar in a Twitter thread/s about AGW. Deforestation, e.g. of the Amazon rainforest is not helping. Nor are neonicitinoids, forbidden in Europe now.
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Re: Insects Disappearing

Postby Sprintcyclist » 22 Oct 2018, 13:38

Miranda wrote:ENVIRONMENT
Insects Are Rapidly Disappearing Around The World, Leaving Scientists Horrified
"This is one of the most disturbing articles I have ever read."

BEN GUARINO, THE WASHINGTON POST
19 OCT 2018
Insects around the world are in a crisis, according to a small but growing number of long-term studies showing dramatic declines in invertebrate populations.
A new report suggests that the problem is more widespread than scientists realized. Huge numbers of bugs have been lost in a pristine national forest in Puerto Rico, the study found, and the forest's insect-eating animals have gone missing, too.

In 2014, an international team of biologists estimated that, in the past 35 years, the abundance of invertebrates such as beetles and bees had decreased by 45 percent.
In places where long-term insect data are available, mainly in Europe, insect numbers are plummeting.
A study last year showed a 76 percent decrease in flying insects in the past few decades in German nature preserves.
The latest report, published Monday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, shows that this startling loss of insect abundance extends to the Americas.
The study's authors implicate climate change in the loss of tropical invertebrates.
"This study in PNAS is a real wake-up call - a clarion call - that the phenomenon could be much, much bigger, and across many more ecosystems," said David Wagner, an expert in invertebrate conservation at the University of Connecticut who was not involved with this research.
He added: "This is one of the most disturbing articles I have ever read."
Bradford Lister, a biologist at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in New York, has been studying rain forest insects in Puerto Rico since the 1970s.

If Puerto Rico is the island of enchantment - "la isla del encanto" - then its rain forest is "the enchanted forest on the enchanted isle", he said.
Birds and coqui frogs trill beneath a 50-foot-tall (15 metre tall) emerald canopy. The forest, named El Yunque, is well-protected. Spanish King Alfonso XII claimed the jungle as a 19th-century royal preserve.
Decades later, Theodore Roosevelt made it a national reserve, and El Yunque remains the only tropical rain forest in the National Forest system.
"We went down in '76, '77 expressly to measure the resources: the insects and the insectivores in the rain forest, the birds, the frogs, the lizards," Lister said.
He came back nearly 40 years later, with his colleague Andrés García, an ecologist at the National Autonomous University of Mexico. What the scientists did not see on their return troubled them.
"Boy, it was immediately obvious when we went into that forest," Lister said. Fewer birds flitted overhead. The butterflies, once abundant, had all but vanished.
García and Lister once again measured the forest's insects and other invertebrates, a group called arthropods that includes spiders and centipedes. The researchers trapped arthropods on the ground in plates covered in a sticky glue, and raised several more plates about three feet into the canopy. The researchers also swept nets over the brush hundreds of times, collecting the critters that crawled through the vegetation.

Each technique revealed the biomass (the dry weight of all the captured invertebrates) had significantly decreased from 1976 to the present day.
The sweep sample biomass decreased to a fourth or an eighth of what it had been. Between January 1977 and January 2013, the catch rate in the sticky ground traps fell 60-fold.
"Everything is dropping," Lister said. The most common invertebrates in the rain forest - the moths, the butterflies, the grasshoppers, the spiders and others - are all far less abundant.
"Holy crap," Wagner said of the 60-fold loss.
Louisiana State University entomologist Timothy Schowalter, who is not an author of the recent report, has studied this forest since the 1990s.
The new research is consistent with his data, as well as the European biomass studies. "It takes these long-term sites, with consistent sampling across a long period of time, to document these trends," he said. "I find their data pretty compelling."
The study authors also trapped anole lizards, which eat arthropods, in the rain forest. They compared these numbers with counts from the 1970s.

Anole biomass dropped by more than 30 percent. Some anole species have altogether disappeared from the interior forest.
Insect-eating frogs and birds plummeted, too. Another research team used mist nets to capture birds in 1990, and again in 2005. Captures fell by about 50 percent.
Garcia and Lister analyzed the data with an eye on the insectivores. The ruddy quail dove, which eats fruits and seeds, had no population change. A brilliant green bird called the Puerto Rican tody, which eats bugs almost exclusively, diminished by 90 percent.
The food web appears to have been obliterated from the bottom. It's credible that the authors link the cascade to arthropod loss, Schowalter said, because "you have all these different taxa showing the same trends - the insectivorous birds, frogs and lizards - but you don't see those among seed-feeding birds."
Lister and Garcia attribute this crash to climate. In the same 40-year period as the arthropod crash, the average high temperature in the rain forest increased by 4 degrees Fahrenheit (2.2 degrees Celsius). The temperatures in the tropics stick to a narrow band.
The invertebrates that live there, likewise, are adapted to these temperatures and fare poorly outside them; bugs cannot regulate their internal heat.
A recent analysis of climate change and insects, published in August in the journal Science, predicts a decrease in tropical insect populations, according to an author of that study, Scott Merrill, who studies crop pests at the University of Vermont.
In temperate regions farther from the equator, where insects can survive a wider range of temperatures, agricultural pests will devour more food as their metabolism increases, Merrill and his co-authors warned.
But after a certain thermal threshold, insects will no longer lay eggs, he said, and their internal chemistry breaks down.
The authors of a 2017 study of vanished flying insects in Germany suggested other possible culprits, including pesticides and habitat loss. Arthropods around the globe also have to contend with pathogens and invasive species.
"It's bewildering, and I'm scared to death that it's actually death by a thousand cuts," Wagner said. "One of the scariest parts about it is that we don't have an obvious smoking gun here."
A particular danger to these arthropods, in his view, was not temperature but droughts and lack of rainfall.
Lister pointed out that, since 1969, pesticide use has fallen more than 80 percent in Puerto Rico. He does not know what else could be to blame.
The study authors used a recent analytic method, invented by a professor of economics at Fordham University, to assess the role of heat.
"It allows you to place a likelihood on variable X causing variable Y," Lister said. "So we did that and then five out of our six populations we got the strongest possible support for heat causing those decreases in abundance of frogs and insects."
The authors sorted out the effects of weather like hurricanes and still saw a consistent trend, Schowalter said, which makes a convincing case for climate.
"If anything, I think their results and caveats are understated. The gravity of their findings and ramifications for other animals, especially vertebrates, is hyperalarming," Wagner said.
But he is not convinced that climate change is the global driver of insect loss.
"The decline of insects in northern Europe precedes that of climate change there," he said. "Likewise, in New England, some tangible declines began in the 1950s."
No matter the cause, all of the scientists agreed that more people should pay attention to the bugpocalypse.
"It's a very scary thing," Merrill said, that comes on the heels of a "gloomy, gloomy" UN report that estimated the world has little more than a decade left to wrangle climate change under control.
But "we can all step up," he said, by using more fuel-efficient cars and turning off unused electronics.
The Portland-based Xerces Society, a nonprofit environmental group that promotes insect conservation, recommends planting a garden with native plants that flower throughout the year.
"Unfortunately, we have deaf ears in Washington," Schowalter said. But those ears will listen at some point, he said, because our food supply will be in jeopardy.
Thirty-five percent of the world's plant crops require pollination by bees, wasps and other animals. And arthropods are more than just pollinators. They're the planet's wee custodians, toiling away in unnoticed or avoided corners.
They chew up rotting wood and eat carrion. "And none of us want to have more carcasses around," Schowalter said. Wild insects provide US$57 billion worth of six-legged labor in the United States each year, according to a 2006 estimate.
The loss of insects and arthropods could further rend the rain forest's food web, Lister warned, causing plant species to go extinct without pollinators.
"If the tropical forests go it will be yet another catastrophic failure of the whole Earth system," he said, "that will feed back on human beings in an almost unimaginable way."
2018 © The Washington Post
This article was originally published by The Washington Post.



hhhhhhhhhhhmmmmmmmmmm, not good.

A result of too many humans on the globe?
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Re: Insects Disappearing

Postby dissilymordentroge » 22 Oct 2018, 13:40

Our species is a plague.
The Human Race is insane.
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Re: Insects Disappearing

Postby ahmed11 » 22 Oct 2018, 20:03

Great thread
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Re: Insects Disappearing

Postby fisherman » 23 Oct 2018, 09:49

dissilymordentroge wrote:Our species is a plague.

That kills everything on its path. The Bulgarian Balkan mountains are empty. Communists and poachers wiped out everything.
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Re: Insects Disappearing

Postby Sprintcyclist » 23 Oct 2018, 11:49

Us backyard gardeners can provide an environment for insects.
I have.
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Re: Insects Disappearing

Postby dissilymordentroge » 23 Oct 2018, 12:07

fisherman wrote:
dissilymordentroge wrote:Our species is a plague.

That kills everything on its path. The Bulgarian Balkan mountains are empty. Communists and poachers wiped out everything.


And how are they going to pollinate rural food crops?
The Human Race is insane.
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Re: Insects Disappearing

Postby fisherman » 23 Oct 2018, 15:27

dissilymordentroge wrote:
fisherman wrote:
dissilymordentroge wrote:Our species is a plague.

That kills everything on its path. The Bulgarian Balkan mountains are empty. Communists and poachers wiped out everything.


And how are they going to pollinate rural food crops?


I don't think it's going to happen. Nobody cares. Eco organisations like Eko Ravnovesie exist so money gets drained. Trees are getting chopped too at a very alarming rate. No new trees are being seeded back. Can't wait to move to a distant isolated island like Pitcairn and die there in peace, alone.
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Re: Insects Disappearing

Postby Aussie » 23 Oct 2018, 15:30

You'd like Norfolk Island better. Fletcher Christian could not hack it at Pitcairn and moved to Norfolk. Be warned however.....once your money is there, it is very hard to get it out.
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Re: Insects Disappearing

Postby fisherman » 25 Oct 2018, 04:04

Aussie wrote:You'd like Norfolk Island better. Fletcher Christian could not hack it at Pitcairn and moved to Norfolk. Be warned however.....once your money is there, it is very hard to get it out.


I thought he died on Pitcairn? Or he was alive and didn't die? Legends tho.

I think I'm just dreaming. Maybe I'll stick to territories that don't require a VISA. French Polynesia don't require a VISA. I'm a EU citizen after all. With British Overseas Territories, they wanted a special permit even before the Poms exited Brexit.

And what if I keep my money in a foreign bank?
And if I have cash, and a boat. Can't I just stuff my money in a compartment in my boat and go my way?
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Re: Insects Disappearing

Postby Aussie » 25 Oct 2018, 09:20

I suppose so, but if you want residency on Norfolk, there must be investment made in Norfolk.
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Re: Insects Disappearing

Postby fisherman » 25 Oct 2018, 14:56

I guess it's Cyprus then. Same rules with Cyprus. Invest, and enjoy. Nice.
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Re: Insects Disappearing

Postby HBS Guy » 26 Oct 2018, 08:54

Tasmania will do me. Cider and cherries, see out the rest of my life, rest of the world’s life?
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Re: Insects Disappearing

Postby fisherman » 26 Oct 2018, 10:41

HBS Guy wrote:Tasmania will do me. Cider and cherries, see out the rest of my life, rest of the world’s life?

Snakes there? Mambas, taipans?
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Re: Insects Disappearing

Postby Aussie » 26 Oct 2018, 14:01

fisherman wrote:
HBS Guy wrote:Tasmania will do me. Cider and cherries, see out the rest of my life, rest of the world’s life?

Snakes there? Mambas, taipans?


No mambas, no taipans....just these ~

Link.
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Re: Insects Disappearing

Postby johnsmith » 26 Oct 2018, 14:05

Aussie wrote:
fisherman wrote:
HBS Guy wrote:Tasmania will do me. Cider and cherries, see out the rest of my life, rest of the world’s life?

Snakes there? Mambas, taipans?


No mambas, no taipans....just these ~

Link.


only 2 or he 3 are a concern! .... i should move to tassie
FD.
I hope that bitch who was running their brothels for them gets raped with a cactus.
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Re: Insects Disappearing

Postby fisherman » 26 Oct 2018, 16:58

Why am I even shitting my pants over this. I'm so dumb. I can get a... How do you say these crockets were named.

Mangoose? Or a mongoose. I think it was a mongoose. The little critter that makes snakes tremble and eats them for breakfast and shits them. I watched a ton of videos and that little bugga is not only fearless, not only out-of-this-world deadly fast, but it has some sort of a tolerance, immunity to snake venom. It can live, and it will live.

So I just get 2-3 mongooses and I can settle one day there. Get me a Polynesian wife, I like Polynesian chicks, or an Aus one like Lucy Fry, get me a photovoltaic power station, a plot of land, build me a small house on two stories, and die there. Away from politics, away from invaders, away from all the pollution and all the bullshit and all the death and crime and murders and fake life.

I can also garden tomatoes. I like tomatoes and artichokes. Yeah. I like these two a lot. I'll make Lukankas, pretty easy to prepare. You just dry the meat. Mix with herbs and dry it. In a cold basement preferably.

Yeah.
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Re: Insects Disappearing

Postby HBS Guy » 26 Oct 2018, 17:32

Sure that the meat doesn’t have to ferment?
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Re: Insects Disappearing

Postby fisherman » 26 Oct 2018, 17:48

HBS Guy wrote:Sure that the meat doesn’t have to ferment?

Ferment? Um... Look.

Uncooked raw meat. Usually a mix of two meats, salt, red peppers, black pepper and others. It's minced too. Put it raw in a well-cleaned gut of an animal. Tight. Hang it in a cold basement or in a fridge with ventilation (needs to have a fan which'll spin and after you close the fridge door). Leave it 1-6 months. Enjoy Lukanka.

File Elena is made the same way but it's a whole meat slice. Not minced. And it's the finest pig's meat. The tenderloin. File Elena is not placed in a gut. The technology there is slightly different. Placed in a bowl of sea salt for a few hours, then in water overnight. Then herbs will stick on it. And hang to dry.
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Re: Insects Disappearing

Postby HBS Guy » 26 Oct 2018, 17:54

I will have a look at the Standom Polish Food stall at the market on Tuesday. If it isn’t there then it isn’t available.

More interested in smoking meat and fish. Also looking to make pates and terrines.

I think we have moved away from the topic of this thread tho. :oops
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Re: Insects Disappearing

Postby fisherman » 26 Oct 2018, 18:01

HBS Guy wrote:I will have a look at the Standom Polish Food stall at the market on Tuesday. If it isn’t there then it isn’t available.

More interested in smoking meat and fish. Also looking to make pates and terrines.

I think we have moved away from the topic of this thread tho. :oops


Yeah. I'm done with the off topic. Sorry. If you don't find it I'll give you the recipe. If you have a willingness to prep.

Too bad you're not from IL. They have a ton of shops there. All BG.
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Re: Insects Disappearing

Postby HBS Guy » 26 Oct 2018, 18:03

I am from SA and soon Tas.
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Re: Insects Disappearing

Postby fisherman » 26 Oct 2018, 18:14

HBS Guy wrote:I am from SA and soon Tas.

South Australia or South Africa? I guess the first.

I meant Illinois. A lot of Bulgarians there so a lot of shops. Don't know about Australia. Probably not a lot of our goods there. Small population.

I'll check out photos of Tasmania. It's weird. I hear Tasmania I make this association with the Tasmanian Devil
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Re: Insects Disappearing

Postby HBS Guy » 26 Oct 2018, 19:26

The Time Warner cartoons portrayed the temper of the Tasmanian Devil quite accurately.

Lefty described how they were renting a unit in rural Tassie. A quokka and a possum were going through the contents of the rubbish bin when a ker-lunk ker-lunk sound was heard: a battle–scarred devil was coming up the steps: the possum and quokka scarpered quicksmart!
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