European insects show evolution at work as climate warms
By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
5/29/2014 (3 years ago)
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)
Climate change is changing insect colors and distributions in Europe according to a new study published in the journal Nature Communications. European scientists say they have documented changes in insect coloration and distribution as ecosystems shift.
The study focused on butterflies and dragonflies specifically. This The Southern Small White (Pieris mannii) has expanded its range northward into new regions as the climate has warmed.
LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - According to a paper published in Nature Communications, a peer-reviewed scientific journal, insects in Southern Europe are taking on more light or clear colorations, and those in the north, are becoming darker.
This process of speciation is an example of evolution at work and reveals adaptations consistent with changes in the natural environment. As Southern Europe becomes warmer, the insects in the region become lighter in color, an adaptation that helps them to stay cooler in hot weather and avoid predation.
Likewise, insects in Northern Europe are becoming darker in response to longer cold spells, a product of climate change most likely linked to the melting of the Arctic ice cap.
Climates, particularly in Southern Europe are changing and environments are shifting. As this gradual change occurs, insects, which can evolve rapidly, are adapting to the changes.
Such changes are more difficult for larger animals which produce far fewer offspring over longer periods. For larger organisms, the shift in the environment is much more serious.
As insects change their coloration, some species will evolve slowly into different, newly-specialized niches suited to their environment. Other examples of species that are no longer as well adapted to the changing environment will become extinct. The white insects are an example of organisms in transition.
The study is considered proof that the climate is changing. The study does not speculate as to the cause of climate change, as this would be beyond the scope of its expertise.
Most scientists however agree that climate change is the result of human activity and that the planet will continue to warm over the next two hundred years or more, driving more evolution in various organisms and favoring new adaptations.
Copyright 2017 - Distributed by THE CALIFORNIA NETWORK
Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for OCTOBER 2017
Workers and the Unemployed. That all workers may receive respect and protection of their rights, and that the unemployed may receive the opportunity to contribute to the common good.
Two volcanoes are about to erupt almost simultaneously, spewing massive quantities of ash and soot into the air. Scientists have warned ... continue reading
A 7.1 quake has rocked Mexico City. Buildings swayed and people dove for cover, but there are now some reports of damage.At least 42 people ... continue reading
Hurricane Irma has destroyed two Caribbean islands, and claimed at least ten lives. Now, the storm is headed towards Florida where it will ... continue reading
Largest ever earthquake swarm detected under killer Yellowstone supervolcano as magma recharges Watch
Yellowstone is now the site of the largest earthquake swarm ever recorded with 2,357 quakes registered since June. The national park, ... continue reading
Today is the World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation, and Pope Francis has asked all Christians to pray for the Earth and the poor. ... continue reading
by Catholic Online
- Daily Reading for Thursday, October 19th, 2017 HD Video
- Callista Gingrich is the next U.S. Ambassador to the Vatican
- Daily Readings for Wednesday, October 18, 2017
- Museum of the Bible to open in Washington D.C., here's what you want ...
- St. Luke: Saint of the Day for Wednesday, October 18, 2017
- Missionary priest kidnapped in Nigeria
- Museum of the Bible set to open in D.C., will be one of the city's ...
- Virgin Mary appears to Hindu schoolchildren in India, miracles reported HD
- Daily Reading for Wednesday, October 18th, 2017 HD
- Intro to Novena to the Saints in Heaven for the saints on earth HD
- Trump ends taxpayer giveaway to insurance companies HD
Learn about Catholic world
Inform - Inspire - Ignite
Catholic Online Saints
Your saints explained
Catholic Online Prayers
Prayers for every need
Catholic Online Bible
Complete bible online
Catholic Online News
Your news Catholic eye
Today's bible reading
Products and services we offer
Catholic Online Shopping
Catholic medals, gifts & books
The California Network
Inspiring streaming service
Learn the Catholic way