Not all insects are pests, and many are actually beneficial to our existence, as well as the earth’s ecosystem. Some can get rid of decaying matter, like plants or dead animals, promote good garden health and produce useful products for us to use.
The insect world is huge, and includes both helpful and harmful species, but every bug plays its own role in some way. Here’s three of our most favourite bugs, and the benefits they have for us.
There are a lot of reasons why butterflies are so important. It’s really crucial to conserve butterflies in the UK, because of their value as a quality of life indicator. They are beautiful, iconic and popular insects, and many people like them. Advertisers and illustrators all over the world use them as a way of showing us that something is environmentally friendly, because they’re so lovely to look at. They also represent freedom, beauty and peace.
Butterflies have a wide range of environmental benefits, including pollination and natural pest control. They are also really important members of the food chain, and sustain the lives of many different species.
Ladybirds, or ladybugs, are considered beneficial because they can help rid plants of crop-destroying aphids, and other destructive pests. Adult ladybirds will feed on these insects, then lay their larvae nearby so they can feed on the insects too.
The only time ladybirds can be considered a nuisance is when they enter our homes during the winter, as they try to find a warm place to live. These can normally be dealt with by vacuuming them up, and emptying the hoover quickly outside. You never want to remove them from fields, orchards or your garden, because they are so beneficial.
Bees play a vital part in pollination, and maintaining the balance in our ecosystem. Without their help, our everyday food supply would be in danger, and would look a lot different to how it does now. At least one third of our staple diets that we rely on would no longer be available without bees to pollenate them.
If bees ceased to exist, we would no longer have foods like asparagus, cucumbers and even apples. Honey is the main food product created by bees, and millions of us in the UK consume it every year.