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Mayfly numbers drop by half since 2012

Mayflies, which form swarms in the billions that are visible on weather radar, are in steep decline, mirroring the plight of insects worldwide. Every summer, mayflies burst forth from lakes and rivers, taking to the skies of North America. These insects, which are particularly abundant in the northern Mississippi River Basin and Great Lakes, live in the water as nymphs before transforming into flying adults. They synchronize their emergence to form huge swarms of up to 80 billion individuals—so massive that, in waterside towns, they are sometimes scooped up with snowplows.

Oligotrophic bacterium Hymenobacter latericoloratus CGMCC 16346 degrades the neonicotinoid imidacloprid in surface water

The intensive and extensive application of imidacloprid in agriculture has resulted in water pollution and risks to aquatic invertebrates. However, pure bacteria remediation of imidacloprid in surface water environments has not been studied. Here, we isolated an imidacloprid-degrading bacterium from a water environment, examined its imidacloprid degradation in pure culture and surface water, sequenced its genome, and compared its Clusters of Orthologous Groups (COG) protein categorization with that for another imidacloprid-degrading bacterium.

IUCN's new Red List reports alarming decline in global freshwater fish species

Freshwater fish species globally are under grave threat according to the latest edition of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN)’s Red List. In fact, over half of Japan’s endemic freshwater fishes and more than a third of freshwater fishes in Mexico were threatened with extinction, the list of threatended species released on July 18, 2019, said.

Rebuilding the Black Bee population

Until the beginning of the 20th century, the British Isles were home to the European Dark Honeybee, which we now usually call the Black Bee. Its Latin name is Apis mellifera mellifera, and it was the dominant honeybee here since the last Ice Age, adapting to our changeable and unpredictable climate and thriving in all kinds of weather alongside our native bumblebees and solitary bees.

The American kestrel is in free fall

Throughout the 1900s, North America’s littlest falcon was also described as the continent’s most common and widespread. Small but fierce and marked with bright plumage rare in the raptor world, the American kestrel (Falco sparverius) could be seen throughout the continent, diving and swooping in fallow fields or under the stadium lights at baseball games, hunting for plump moths or small mice. In the Montreal area, they lived in the suburbs, in places like Vaudreuil-Dorion and Île-Perrot, drawn by unused fields and abundant food.

Himalayan Salamander is in crisis

The endangered Himalyan Salamander is on the verge of extinction due to the growing human encroachment in its habitat, use of pesticides in cereal crops and its trafficking. The Himalayan Newt Tylototriton verrucosusis considered one of the most primitive species among living Salamanders. It lives in water and wetland areas. The locals also call this amphibian as 'Pani Kukur (water dog)'.

Bees - among most vital creatures on Earth - join endangered species list

Recent studies have shown a dramatic decline in the bee population – with a nearly 90% decrease in recent years – placing the insect on the endangered species list.

The use of uncontrolled pesticides, the continuation of deforestation and lack of cipher flowers (bee food) are the main reasons for the recent population nosedive.

Neonicotinoids are wiping out hundreds of beehives in parts of NZ's North Island

Neil Mossop knows bees. His family's been in the honey business in Tauranga for more than 70 years. But that experience couldn't have prepared him for the shock of finding nearly 200 of his hives decimated - six million bees wiped out. "There was just a mat of dead bees," he says. Initially, Mossop thought his bees had been deliberately poisoned. But once that was ruled out, he had an inkling as to what was killing them.