It’s the Little Things: The Biodiversity and Abundance of Insects on Glendon Campus
Insect species are crucial to the integrity of forest environments and serve an important role in the food chain for smaller animals and birds. The aim of our research project was to determine the effects of urbanization on the biodiversity and abundance of insects in the different environmental conditions that Glendon Campus of York University (Toronto, Canada) offers. We set up 4 pitfall traps in 3 different sites on campus: one in an isolated forest, one by the Don River, and the final site by a highly circulated road. We hypothesized that the insect volume would be lowest by the most urban environment (i.e. the road) and the highest in the most natural environment (i.e. in the isolated forest). After a week of specimen collection and microscope identification, our results showed both the most biodiversity an abundance as predicted in the most isolated forest environment and the least amount in the humid environment by the Don River. This highlighted the importance of forest preservation, as it does affect insect species, but also can be extended to other mammals and avian species that prefer undisturbed environments.
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