A Swiss zoo has predicted that almost 60 per cent of all insect species in the country are threatened with extinction.
Experts from Zurich Zoo say that the declining insect biodiversity could have a disastrous effect on its animals as most of them consume bugs in their diet.
Zoo officials revealed in a statement obtained by Newsflash: “Zurich Zoo feeds around two tonnes of insects to a large number of animals from all animal groups every year.
“For example the chameleons, anteaters, toucans or the squirrel monkeys. Crickets, grasshoppers or even fruit flies are provided.
“Many insects are on the menu of other animals.
“Spiders eat about 400-800 million tonnes of insects every year. Birds, mammals, reptiles, amphibians and fish also eat insects.”
Their call for conservation came after a recent study conducted in Central Europe stated that the number of flying insects has declined by more than 75 per cent in the past 30 years.
The study also claimed that 40 per cent of all insects could become extinct in the next few decades.
Habitat loss, pesticides, diseases, introduced species and climate change were listed as the main reasons behind the extinction.
A spokesperson from the zoo said: “Insects are by far the largest group in the animal world.
“With the cooler weather, the animals hide and thus prepare for the winter. Some do not survive the cold season.
“Insects are incredibly diverse, useful, sometimes annoying, threatened and fascinating.”
Zurich Zoo provides home for a large variety of insects placed in their Exotarium enclosure.
They said: “There are estimated 200 million insects for every human being on the planet. Insects come in various shapes and colors and inhabit all continents.”
Their collaboration with the Bat Conservation Foundation supports the biodiversity of insects as the fundamental food unit for bats.