Europe's crickets and grasshoppers are threatened for extinction, according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). Researchers's assessment has found that more than a quarter of the species may be in danger.
The study focused on more than 1,000 species of grasshopper and cricket living in Europe. A group known as Orthoptera
, composed of crickets, bush crickets and grasshoppers live on the continent's grassland may someday vanish.
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The species play a crucial role on the food web, as they are an important food source for birds and reptiles. Meaning, their decline could affect entire ecosystems.
The probable root of the extinction is the loss of their habitats due to wildfires, intensive agriculture and tourism development.
Jean-Christophe Vié, deputy director, IUCN Global Species Programme, said to save these species from the brink of extinction, humanity needs to make a move now to protect and restore their habitats.
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"This can be done through sustainable grassland management using traditional agricultural practices, for example," Dir Vié said in a statement.
"If we do not act now, the sound of crickets in European grasslands could soon become a thing of the past."
More than 150 scientists collaborated for the assessment of the species population. The study took more than 2 years. Axel Hochkirch is chair of the IUCN invertebrate conservation sub-committee is the lead author of the research.
"If we lose grasshoppers and other Orthoptera like crickets and bush crickets, we will lose diversity," he told BBC News.
"They are very good indicators of biodiversity in open ecosystems."
The researchers are particularly concerned about the small range species such as the Crau plain grasshopper, which lives only on the Crau plain in the South of France.
"The results from this IUCN Red List are deeply worrying," said Luc Bas, director of the IUCN European Regional Office.