We have a lot to be thankful for this year. But did you know that there are a lot of reasons to be thankful for insects, our co-inhabitants of this planet?
Besides being a nutritious food source for millions of people, they provide their own form of pest control, they are nature’s woodland conservationists and forest, grassland and crop pollinators. There are many insects that have a positive impact on human health and our environment. Without insects, man can not survive and ultimately neither can this planet, as we know it.
Here’s a few our insect neighbors to be thankful for:
Honey Bees: Bees are one of the worlds most important pollinators. They also provide, honey, bee pollen, royal jelly and beeswax. As they are endangered and beneficial, it’s just right to give them a little love and thanks this Thanksgiving.
There are other important pollinators, too. Other bee species ( it’s estimated that there are at least 16,000 different species of bees world-wide), butterflies, beetles, flies and don’t forget birds and bats.
Praying Mantises: These insects are nature’s pest control technicians. They eat insects that we humans find annoying and destructive such as flies and caterpillars. Even mosquitoes that bite and infect us with diseases are on their menu. Thanks, guys and gals for your incredible appetite.
Lady Bugs: Most of these insects consume vast quantities of plant eating insects such as aphids and scale and in doing so they help protect home gardens and commercial crops.
Termites: These insects might seem an odd choice to include here. But termites are really important to our environment. They are world class decomposers.
They break down plant fibers and recycle decaying trees into new, rich soil. It’s not their fault that we build our homes from their favorite food, wood.
Termites deserve gratitude for their recycling efforts. Just pray that they stick to the forests and woodlands and away from our homes.
Roaches, Beetles, Grasshoppers, Termites, Ants, Caterpillars, Spiders, Grubs, Crickets etc.:
In developing countries harvesting insects provides livelihoods to predominately women from rural areas. They have brought prosperity to impoverished communities. For example, the Mopane Caterpillar, from South Africa, brings in about $85 million a year. In Cameroon and the Congo Basin, the insect trade accounts for upward of 20 percent of all economic activity.
So as we all gather around the table this Thanksgiving, giving thanks for our health, family and good friends. Remember to include a little gratitude for the bugs that make our lives livable and our planet thrive.
This Thanksgiving, be grateful, give thanks and enjoy!
If you are more frustrated than thankful for the unwanted insects invading your home and landscape, call the professionals and start enjoying your Thanksgiving Holiday and beyond.