Entomologists say previous headlines linking freezing weather to killing off insects have been exaggerated.
With record-breaking cold temperatures in much of the United States recently, newspaper headlines have suggested that the freezing weather this winter could mean fewer insects next spring. For example:
- The New York Times: “Celebrating Deep Freeze, Insect Experts See a Chance to Kill Off Invasive Species”
- National Public Radio: “The Upside Of The Bitter Cold: It Kills Bugs That Kill Trees”
- Minnesota Public Radio News: “Extreme cold may wipe out high percentage emerald ash borer larvae”
However, to borrow a quote from Mark Twain, reports of insect deaths have been greatly exaggerated. Fortunately, the journalists who wrote the articles above balanced the optimistic headlines with more realistic views in the actual text after doing their research and talking to entomologists.
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