One Of The World’s Largest Insects Is Saved From Extinction
Some countries have governments that make insect-conservation a primary concern. New Zealand is one of those countries where insect-conservation is taken very seriously. For example, the giant weta, which is one of the biggest insects in the world and native to New Zealand, has been brought back from the brink of extinction, but who knows for how long.
The giant weta is not your typical insect. This bug can weigh up to thirty grams and is the size of a big mouse. The giant weta, along with many other endangered insects, mostly live within a large fenced-in reserve in New Zealand. This fence is two and a half meters high, and it was built to keep destructive pests out. Animals like cats, rats, and weasels could compromise the well-balanced ecosystem being preserved within the fence. Unfortunately, many species of the weta insect are escaping over the fence. This has resulted in many nearby homeowners having to call authorities to have these giant insects removed from their homes.
At one point the weta insect was on the verge of extinction, but the construction of the preserve has given the weta insects a safe place to dwell. Now experts are worried because the weta insects are escaping the reserve’s boundaries. Once these big bugs escape they become easy prey for most mammals, even mice. However, there are still a few thousand of these weta insects within the preserve.
Since the world’s insect populations are decreasing, New Zealand’s government and private forces have created multiple reserves in order to conserve insects that are dying off. These reserves are designed to keep mammals, and every other type of predator, out of the reserve. Some nearby islands even serve as reserves for some of the world’s most unique and diverse insect populations. Hopefully, the weta insects can be saved by these conservation efforts.
Why do you think that it is important to maintain a diverse community of insects on this planet?