Our grand natural experiment called climate change continues. Researcher Florian Altermatt of UC-Davis found that some moths and butterflies in Central Europe have added an extra generation to their breeding season for the first time on record. The report appears online in Proceedings of the Royal Society B.
Altermatt speculates that warming triggers the insects to exit diapause (insect hibernation during winter) early and speeds development. Combined, this may allow time for a bonus generation before day length cues the insects to begin overwintering.