Word Pairs


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The words
Scientists say that global warming isn't the only [series / serious] threat to humans. Another major threat is the [falling / failing] numbers of insects and the extinction of many species. Scientists say that [halve / half] of all insects worldwide have been declining [for / since] the 1970s. A new warning is that over 40 per cent of insect species could die [up / out] in our lifetime. Researchers said the number of insects is decreasing [by / for] 2.5 per cent every year. The scientists are [called / calling] it an "insect apocalypse". Many species of butterflies, bees and other [hugs / bugs] are now extinct. In the U.K. researchers say 23 bee and wasp species have [gone / going] extinct in the past century. Scientists say the apocalypse could [barrel / trigger] , "a catastrophic collapse of Earth's ecosystems".

Lead researcher Professor Dave Goulson said a [lot / lots] of insects are being killed by pesticides [used / using] for farming and gardening. He said [fewest / fewer] numbers of insects might mean we cannot [feed / food] people. He told reporters: "Three quarters of our crops depend [on / in] insect pollinators. Crops will begin to fail. We won't have [things / thing] like strawberries. We can't feed 7.5 billion people [within / without] insects." He said one of the most [worried / worrying] trends is the decline of honeybees. In the USA, the number of honeybee colonies [tripped / dropped] from six million in 1947 to just 2.5 million in 2014. Professor Goulson warned people that: "We can't wait another 25 years before we do anything because it will [been / be] too late."

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