5 Reasons Insects Are Important

Insects are an integral part of the ecosystem. Yet, many people are ignorant of how important they are. Perhaps because of their association with evil, ill-health, and dark mentions in folklore – they don’t get the credit they deserve for propping up human life. However, the significance of insects can be found in a variety of everyday factors.

5 Reasons Why Insects Are So Important

There are a colossal number of reasons why insects are essential to our society – from food production all the way to pest control. We’ve listed a few of the most significant factors.

They pollinate

Without pollination, a lot of the produce we eat and use for essentials would not grow. Insects are the carriers that enable the fertilization and reproduction of a huge variety of plant life. We often think of bees as pollinators and while important they are far from the only insect pollinators. Wasps and flies also play an integral role. Any dwindling populations of these pollinators can be a threat to humans.

Dagger fly pollinating
The Dagger Fly -Rod [email protected]

They decompose waste

Insects can be considered Earth’s clean-up crew. If we didn’t have insects around us – we’d find the planet littered with a lot more waste, animal corpses, and feces. If you think that the globe is messy already – imagine what it would be like with more decomposing organisms around us. Insects feed and thrive off these food sources.

Dung Beetle
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They are a food source

Insects are a food source for many mammals that play vital parts in the eco-system. They are even a food source for humans and likely will increasingly be so. They are rich in protein, vitamins, and minerals. Birds, reptiles, and mammals are dependent on insects making them a key part of the food chain.

They control pests

There are millions of species of insects worldwide – quite a few of them are pests to human livelihoods. Some of these creatures will eat crops or destroy structures – other species of insects help control them. Without these insects – it would be hard to get anything done, considering how destructive pests can be to the environment.

Robber fly with prey
“Hanging Thief Robber Fly” by TexasEagle is licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0

They have helped advance technology

They have inspired many technological advancements in society. Studying the navigation techniques of beetles has led to GPS development – and the eyes and brains of Dragonflies have created visual tracking algorithms and drone technologies.

Drone
“Drone” by Trotaparamos is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

Final thought

If humans were to become extinct insects would continue to thrive, if insects became extinct humans would likely not survive. We need insects far more than they need us.