Most of us have had unpleasant experiences with insects at one time or
another. It may be from the sting of an insect or a great mess caused
by a group of insects. You may have been spooked by an insect that
landed on your plate or a bug that you inhaled while riding your bike.
Before you wish there were no insects, let me remind you that we owe
them a great debt. Of course insect bites are not enjoyable and a
plague of locusts can ruin a crop, but do not forget all the good
things insects do for us to protect our food and save us money.
John Losey of Cornell University and Mace Vaughan of Xerces Society of
Invertebrate Conservation say that insects contribute $57 billion in
ecological services in the USA each year. As one example, insects
pollinate plants making it possible for our crops to grow. According to
Losey and Vaughan, in 2005, native insects pollinated plants that would
have cost farmers $3 billion to hire honeybees to do. Also in 2005,
$4.5 billion in crop losses were avoided by native insects that ate
foreign invaders and thereby saved crops while avoiding the use of
pesticides. Insects process our waste and the waste of our animals.
Bovine waste alone creates a major problem. Various dung beetles do the
processing of the waste products of cattle, and in 2005, American
ranchers saved $380 million in waste disposal costs thanks to those
Insects also play a major part in America’s outdoor recreation
industry. In 2005, $50 billion was spent on various recreational
activities which depend on insects, including bird watching, fishing,
The point of all this is that bugs are worth a lot of money to us. It
has been said that “God doesn’t make any junk.” Insects are not “junk.”
They are incredibly important and useful to man. They have been
designed by God to do important things, and the more we learn of what
they do, the more we realize how valuable they are.
Source: National Wildlife
magazine, October/November 2006, page 37.
Back to Contents
Does God Exist?, JanFeb10.