Web of life essay competition

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When given the question “what good are bugs?” many people have nothing positive to say, as they only remember the bad things that bugs do; bees and wasps sting, ants get into homes, and spider webs are an eye sore. However, people tend to forget that bugs can do so many good things for the environments they live in. This includes pollinating flowers and other plants, decomposing plant debris and animals, helping control pest insect populations, and so much more. A constant lesson that has to be reinforced everyday so that everyone understands that not all bugs are bad and that many bugs do more than thought. When Gilbert Waldbauer was asked the same question of “what good are bugs?” he wrote a book to give his greatest answer and named the book What Good are Bugs? – Insects in the Web of Life. Within his book he covered four main areas: helping plants, helping animals, limiting population growth, and cleaning up. Within these four main areas there are twelve different topics; all of which cover a broad spectrum of the way bugs provide good. Of the topics Waldbauer covered the most important ways that bugs provide good to varying environments is by helping plants and flowers through pollination and seed dispersal.
Today pollination is a common everyday occurrence and no one thinks twice about how and why it happens. However, two centuries back very little people understood insect pollination because the showy flower petals were said to be the Creator’s way of pleasing his people (Waldbauer, 2003). It was not until 1793 that Conrad Sprengel first explained that the colorful flowers are the means of attracting insects for pollination (Waldbauer, 2003). Sprengel’s understanding of insect pollination came from his own understanding o...

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...2010). Tassel Emergence and Pollen Shed. West Lafayette, IN: Purdue University, Agronomy Department.

7) Palmer, Brain. (2013). From jasmine to rotting flesh, flowers emit fragrance to attract pollinators. Health and Science: The Washington Post.

8) Soomers, H., Karssenberg, D., Soons, ., Verweij, ., Verhoeven, ., and Wassen, . (2013). Wind and Water Dispersal of Wetland Plants Across Fragmented Landscapes. Ecosystems, 16, 434-451.

9) Speight, ., Hunter, ., and Watt, . (2008). Ecology of Insects: Concepts and Applications. 2nd edition. Chichester, West Sussex: Wiley-Blackwell.

10) Triplehorn, ., and Johnson, . (2005). Borron and Delong's Introduction to the Study of Insects. 7th ed. Belmont, CA: Brooks/Cole.

11) Waldbauer, Gilbert. (2003). What Good are Bugs? – Insects in the Web of Life. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Pres

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Web of life essay competition

web of life essay competition


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