15 Easy Ways You Can Help Bees, Butterflies, and Other Insects by Kristen M. Stanton


Chances are, unless you’re an entomologist or an exterminator, you don’t spend much of your day thinking about bugs. But if you spend a few minutes a day, or even more than a few minutes, you’re probably worried about our natural world. So am I.

The lowly bug, so often viewed with derision, trampled underfoot, sprayed with poison, swatted, and ridiculed – just so happens to be supporting life on this planet, and that includes us. It’s beyond time for us to give insects the overdue love, nurturing, and attention they deserve – because they are in deep trouble. And it’s all out fault.

The Insect Apocalypse

Insects around the world are facing an apocalypse as a result of toxins we humans put into the environment and as a result of anthropogenic (yep, that’s us too) climate change. Like plants, insects are a foundational contributor to sustaining life on Earth. And it’s up to use to save them.

I must say, writing this post was like pulling a thread on a sweater that slowly began to unravel. One link to one piece of research led to another and another. As I learned more about insects, I understood even more acutely how they personify the interdependence of life on Earth – how fully we all depend on biodiversity.

And it’s our own hubris – our self-involved preoccupation with our own species, how we fetishize our own wants, politics, and neuroses – that has caused us to totally drop the ball, to miss the big picture and allow this catastrophe to happen. Time to wake up and take stronger action.

How do insects support life on Earth?

A Shamrock Spider (Araneus trifolium) in its web with fog droplets, San Francisco, CA. Photo: Brocken Inaglory.

As explained by the e-learning site CK12, insects perform many important functions that sustain life on our planet:

  • They aerate the soil.
  • They

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