Essay on Causes of the Loss of Butterfly Diversity in England

Submitted By samuelephant
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Causes of the Loss of Butterfly Diversity in England
Samuel(Zhao Nanxiang)
Renison University College
Writing Skills Section300-2

Causes of the Loss of Butterfly Diversity in England

Butterflies are beautiful creatures that enrich our quality of life. They indicate environmental changes during certain periods. However, there has been a decrease of three quarters of 54 resident species since the 1970s.What's worse, five species have died out since the recording began in 1800 (Fox et al.,2007).The chief causes of butterfly extinction in England are the deterioration of habitats, frequent changes of climate and the invasion of alien butterflies species. Climatic anomaly is one of the main causes for the decrease of butterflies. It has been noted that "butterflies are highly sensitive to climate [changes]: populations typically increase during warm, dry weather" (Fox et al.,2007). In the same manner, oviposition, a process in which butterflies lay their eggs, as well as metamorphosis, the process of changing into an adult butterfly, could be very difficult to happen if butterflies live in a changeable weather. Butterflies have to stop these processes if the temperature drops sharply, or if the weather becomes too humid, which happens very often due to the global warming. Carbon dioxide produced by a great many cars and greenhouse gases released by many factories are the main causes of global warming and extreme weather (e.g. storms, the Ei-Nino phenomenon etc.) as well as other climatic anomalies. With the accelerating process of industrialization, the change of climate is becoming more and more abnormal and frequent. Because of the fluctuation of the climate and the high sensitiveness to the changes, the number of butterflies is being drastically reduced. The destruction and deterioration of habitats is the primary cause of butterfly decline. Human activities contribute in a large extent to the loss of habitats. For example, overpopulation forces humans to reclaim land as well as to deforest land in order to create food growing fields, but also for business, such as logging industry, which makes profits from selling wood. Consequently, woodland and grassland are largely replaced by the high-rise buildings or farmland. According to the research by Fox and other experts (2007), it is observed that the 93% of butterfly population was reduced by the 30% reduction in habitat. The continuing destruction of post-industrial 'brownfield' habitats and upland bogs is responsible for recent losses of Dingy Skipper and Large Health colonies. Butterflies cannot live without high quality of habitats. Most of extinct butterflies died from the fragmentation of poor living places. Scientists also point out that degradation of habitats along with climatic anomaly account for 80% of the diversity loss. For instance, in England, approximately half to two-thirds of the extinction of Aricia Artaxerxes have relation to the habitat-related factors and the others with climatic anomaly (Franco et al.,2006).Both causes relate to human activities. Hence, we can draw a conclusion that human beings should take the most responsibility for the dramatic diversity loss of butterfly. Another cause is that invasive species are competing for resources with the