Nature crisis: Moths have ‘secret role’ as crucial pollinators 飛蛾作為傳粉者 扮演著重要的 「秘密角色」

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Long seen as fluttering pests that make holes in your clothes, scientists now say we have badly misjudged the humble moth. While bees are widely recognised for their role as pollinators, we have overlooked the same job being done by moths during the hours of darkness.

長久以來,飛蛾被看作是撲棱著翅膀、在衣服上鑽洞的害蟲,但現在科學家們說,我們嚴重地錯判了這些不起眼的飛蛾。雖然蜜蜂傳播花粉的作用被人們普遍認可,但我們卻忽視了飛蛾在黑夜中也做著相同的工作。

The study published in the journal Biology Letters found that pollen often sticks to the moth’s hairy body and is then transported to a wide range of plants and flowers during their nighttime travels.

這篇發表在《生物學快報》期刊上的研究發現,花粉通常粘在蛾子毛茸茸的身體上,等到夜間活動時,隨即被運送到各種各樣的植物和花朵上。

Not only are their distribution networks larger and more complex than daytime pollinators, the moths help pollinate species rarely visited by bees and butterflies.

飛蛾的運輸網絡不僅比日間傳粉昆蟲的網絡更大、更複雜,而且還能幫助蜜蜂和蝴蝶很少光顧的物種進行授粉。

The researchers from University College London are concerned because moth numbers are still in serious decline due to pesticides and changes in land use. The moth’s real problem is perception, they say. And the key to preserving their vital role isn’t regulation, but recognition.

來自倫敦大學學院的研究人員擔心,由於殺蟲劑和土地利用的變化,飛蛾數量仍在急劇下降。他們說,飛蛾面臨的真正問題是人們對這個物種的看法。然而保護飛蛾這一重要角色的關鍵不是規章制度,而是人們對它們的理解與認可。

詞彙

fluttering (動物的翅膀)撲打著
pests 害蟲
misjudged 被錯誤地判斷
humble 不起眼的,普通的
recognised 被認可
pollinators 傳粉者
pollen 花粉
transported 被傳送
distribution networks 運輸網絡
species 物種
pesticides 殺蟲劑
perception 看法,認識
regulation 控制,管理

閱讀理解:請在讀完上文後,回答下列問題。

1. True or false? Moths help pollinate plants and flowers.

2. How are moths seen by people?

3. Why are researchers concerned about moths?

4. What is the key to preserving the moth’s vital role, according to the scientists?

答案  

1. True or false? Moths help pollinate plants and flowers.
True. While bees are widely recognised for their role as pollinators, the same job is being done by moths.

2. How are moths seen by people?
They are long seen as fluttering pests that make holes in your clothes.

3. Why are researchers concerned about moths?
They are concerned because moth numbers are still in serious decline due to pesticides and changes in land use.

4. What is the key to preserving the moth’s vital role, according to the scientists?
The key to preserving their vital role is recognition, not regulation.