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    ...Without having a bad effect on the food chain? :confused:
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    (Original post by Numberwang)
    ...Without having a bad effect on the food chain? :confused:
    I'm not a biologist, but that sounds like a bad idea. Interfering with the food chain is never a good thing.
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    (Original post by Chlorophile)
    I'm not a biologist, but that sounds like a bad idea. Interfering with the food chain is never a good thing.
    But we have bees, right?
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    (Original post by Numberwang)
    But we have bees, right?
    That's like saying let's get rid of sharks because we have Whales. They're not the same thing.

    Bees help pollinate flowers and planets, among other things, while wasps keep other pests under control. Everything works in a balance. Get rid of something completely and artificially and you create an imbalance. Historically, that's always been a really bad idea.
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    (Original post by Drewski)
    That's like saying let's get rid of sharks because we have Whales. They're not the same thing.

    Bees help pollinate flowers and planets, among other things, while wasps keep other pests under control. Everything works in a balance. Get rid of something completely and artificially and you create an imbalance. Historically, that's always been a really bad idea.
    Could we get rid of them gradually? For me they do no good... stinging members of the public, ruining my picnics.
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    (Original post by Numberwang)
    Could we get rid of them gradually? For me they do no good... stinging members of the public, ruining my picnics.
    You could certainly do something: man up and get on with your life.
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    what a ****ing dumbass
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    (Original post by Numberwang)
    Could we get rid of them gradually? For me they do no good... stinging members of the public, ruining my picnics.
    There doesn't seem to be too many this year, but there are a few more butterflies and bees which is always a good thing.
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    (Original post by Numberwang)
    Could we get rid of them gradually? For me they do no good... stinging members of the public, ruining my picnics.
    Lots of animals do no good for lots of people...doesn't mean we should kill them. Who knows what effect that could have on the whole ecosystem. Most insects have at least one species of wasp that feeds upon it. Get rid of the wasps and all these insects will increase in population size. What if we get more locusts and caterpillars? More crops are eaten, less food...famine. Obviously that is the worst case scenario but wasps are very important and just because you find them annoying (and to be fair I hate wasps too) killing the whole species, even gradually, would be disastrous.

    Anyway, who says we have the right to decide what species live and die?
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    (Original post by Numberwang)
    But we have bees, right?
    You know, there was a time during the cultural revolution in china where the government decided to encourage the population to get involved in exterminating sparrows, because they were eating all the seeds and negatively affecting the crops.

    It was an extremely successful campaign and the sparrow was nearly completely wiped out.

    Unfortunately sparrows also eat insects. Without sparrows the locust population grew unchecked and decimated the crops and farmland, resulting in The Great Famine, in which ~30 million people died.

    Moral of the story: Don't **** about with the Eco-system.

    Edit: Not 30k. 30 million.
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    (Original post by Munrot07)
    What if we get more locusts and caterpillars? More crops are eaten, less food...famine. Obviously that is the worst case scenario
    This actually happened.
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    oh ffs
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    (Original post by Numberwang)
    But we have bees, right?
    Bees aren't wasps. You can't exchange one for the other.

    Also, whilst I know that you don't mean this seriously, it's a pretty arrogant attitude to act as if it's right to exterminate a species just because it annoys people. We're only one species on this planet.
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    Don't mess with nature, especially something as complex as an entire species
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    (Original post by Drewski)
    That's like saying let's get rid of sharks because we have Whales. They're not the same thing.

    Bees help pollinate flowers and planets, among other things, while wasps keep other pests under control. Everything works in a balance. Get rid of something completely and artificially and you create an imbalance. Historically, that's always been a really bad idea.
    True. I've heard mosquitoes are an exception though, if we got rid of them there wouldn't be any major repercussions.
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    (Original post by OMG TOOTHBRUSH)
    True. I've heard mosquitoes are an exception though, if we got rid of them there wouldn't be any major repercussions.
    You might be onto something there...
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    I shall take a different angle.

    We as a species are ALWAYS altering food chains to suit our purposes. 5000 years ago the profile of species on this island would have been entirely different. When the agricultural revolution came along we destroyed habitats en masse, deliberately favouring some species over others. It has resulted in the extinction of many species. And its turned out pretty well. We could sustain nowhere near as many individuals if we hadn't done this.

    To give a specific example, we wiped wild boar off of this island about 700 years ago. The have now been reintroduced for some reason... and people hate it. They attack dogs, destroy crops, cause traffic accidents... hunting boar to extinction seems to have been a good thing.

    So maybe deliberately altering ecology needs to be approached with caution, be can be a good thing.
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    Pro tip: Use "food web" not food chain, science people shun the "CHAIN" part because that suggests linear transfer of energy in one direction, yano?

    On topic: I'm unsure of wasps contribution to our food supply but let me tell you this kind sir. The complete removal of any species on earth, no matter how insignificant you may believe it to be, has a significant knock on impact on many other animals, systems and services, many of which we exploit.

    There was a gigantic study a while back called the Millenium Ecosystem Assessment and it essentially explains that biodiversity is essential to the existance of us. Biodiversity supports what are called ecosystem services, things like nutrient cycles, oxygen production, soil production, erosion protection (I could go on for ever).

    For example, who would really care if worms went exinct, your bog standard, garden variety earth worm, disappearing from the face of the earth over night. If this happened, there would be less recycling of soil surface litter, things like fallen leaves, less nutrient cycling in soil, less soil physical soil engineering (influences soil type). This would in turn mean poorer soil quality both in terms of content and structure, this would then greatly impact on the viability of soil for growing plants, this could damage the gardening and agriculture industries among others. Many animals feed on worms, moles and birds for example, they would then have fewer food options and a lower volume of food to choose from this would therefore potentially result in a population crash in these animals and therefore we would face similar issues with the knock on effects of their numbers diminishing.

    Loosing a species is irreverisble as things currently stand, the more species we loose the greater the reduction in biodiversity, the greater the reduction in diversity, the greater the reduction in ecosystem services.

    To conclude, I don't specifically know what would happen if wasps disappeared. I can however promise you it would matter and it would matter in ways that we probably can't even anticipate.
 
 
 
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