Insects — the neglected 99 percent


This December, the Xerces Society celebrated its 40th anniversary. Not bad for a group that champions the spineless.

No, the Xerces Society isn't a fraternity of bank executives or mortgage lenders. It's a Portland, Oregon-based non-profit dedicated to the protection of invertebrates, animals that lack a physical (rather than metaphorical) backbone. Animals like earthworms, bumblebees, and beetles.

Invertebrates are the planet's soil tillers and pollen pimps, its gravediggers and stream cleaners; the animal kingdom's working class. In fact, they represent 99 percent of life on earth. So what better time than now, during "Occupy" mania, for the Xerces Society to celebrate 40 years of advocacy on behalf of invertebrates, Earth's industrious, but neglected, 99 percent?

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