What is the Windscreen Phenomenon?

To many motorists, ‘the windscreen phenomenon’ might seem like an end to one of the biggest nuisances associated with motorway driving. However, to many environmentalists, this news is considered the symptom of something rather troubling. So, in this article, the team at 1st Call Windscreens will delve further into this problem, and look at the implications it has for both motorists and naturalists.

What is the Windscreen Phenomenon?

The windscreen phenomenon explained

The nature of the phenomenon is quite simple: do you remember how, shortly after your car had been cleaned, you would look at your windscreen and, to your horror, it had quickly become a mass graveyard for small insects? This was a real problem for many motorists, especially in the summer. And then it wasn’t.

This is the windscreen phenomenon: not seeing the splatter of insects on one’s windscreen after driving at a certain speed. For most motorists, this sort of thing would simply go unnoticed, and if it was, it would be deemed a trivial phenomenon that benefited them anyway. However, unfortunately, this phenomenon isn’t anywhere as trivial as we might like to think.

A lack of insects plastered to our windscreens isn’t just something we’re experiencing here in the UK, either – it’s a worldwide phenomena. Scientists in various regions of Europe and North America have noticed marked reductions in insect populations, reductions which have major implications for the biotic world and human society.

Why are our windscreens so important?

This is certainly interesting, you might think, but there’s another question to be asked: why are scientists using everyday driving experiences and the testimony of your average motorist to make scientific inferences? What do we know?

Well, it’s more about what scientists don’t know. In recent years, scientists simply hadn’t been studying the insects which we tended to find on our windscreens, meaning that there was little reliable data out there regarding population numbers.

However, scientists had been documenting the alarming declines in species such as domesticated honey bees and monarch butterflies. So, teaming this existing knowledge with the windscreen phenomenon allowed scientists to make a greater discovery: there are in fact numerous species of insect whose populations are on a steep decline.

Why is it happening?

It’s not entirely clear what’s causing these losses in in insect populations. However, there are two factors which stand out as the most likely contributors. These are drastic changes in habitat from ever-increasing agricultural production and changing weather patterns, and also the intensive use of a new generation of pesticides. As fields expand and hedgerows disappear, we are constantly depriving these creatures a place to live and thrive.

So, this certainly gives you something to think about next time you’re driving around on a hot summer’s day!

Here at 1st Call Windscreens, we’ve made quite the name for ourselves throughout Maidstone, Gillingham, Sittingbourne, Chatham, Rochester, Medway Towns and the neighbouring areas. We offer an extremely efficient and competitively priced service replacing and repairing windscreens, generating a huge number of satisfied customers. If you’d like to be one of them, simply contact us today!



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