Girl Planting seeds

‘It’s like nothing else’: insect swarms on Cyprus reveal incredible journeys

For eight hours a day, from March until May, research biologist Will Hawkes surveys huge swarms of insects landing on the Karpaz Peninsula on the north-east corner of Cyprus. “This place is a migratory hotspot for millions of painted lady butterflies, drone fly hoverflies, seven-spot ladybirds and vagrant emperor dragonflies – it’s like nothing I’ve ever seen before,” says Hawkes, a PhD student at the University of Exeter’s Genetics of Migration lab who first studied the phenomenon here a year ago. “This island is a pit stop for millions of insects that fly at high altitudes over the sea then come to land to rest as they migrate, possibly thousands of kilometres from the Middle East to western Europe. It’s just astonishing that these creatures migrate such long distances and in such vast numbers in order to find the right food to eat and to reproduce in environments at particular temperatures,” he says.  Read more.....



close (X)