Insects play critical ecological roles around the world. That’s why studies in the past several years that found massive insect die-offs sparked ominous headlines warning that an “insect apocalypse” was underway.

Ecologist Matthew Moran and his colleagues wanted to see what was happening in North America, so they did a broad review of thousands of datasets. Their findings show how little we really know about the insect world, and why there’s room for optimism even in a world radically altered by humankind.

Also today:

Jennifer Weeks

Environment + Energy Editor

The Texas frosted elfin (Callophrys irus hadros), a small butterfly subspecies found only in Arkansas, Texas, Oklahoma and Louisiana, has lost most of its prairie habitat and is thought to have dramatically declined over the last century. Matthew D. Moran

Insect apocalypse? Not so fast, at least in North America

Matthew D. Moran, Hendrix College

Recent reports of dramatic declines in insect populations have sparked concern about an 'insect apocalypse.' But a new analysis of data from sites across North America suggests the case isn't proven.


Politics + Society


Environment + Energy


The wall of Moms group is the latest in a long tradition of mothers’ movements around the world. Alisha Jucevic via Getty Images / AFP via Getty Images

Video: The Wall of Moms builds on a long protest tradition

Kelsy Kretschmer, Oregon State University

By inflicting violence on protesting moms, governments only amplify the message of the movement they seek to quell.

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