ADVERTISEMENT

The Winners and The Losers

The Winners:
Our demise would be good news for many species. Below is a small sample of the animals and plants that would benefit from the disappearance of humans.

BIRDS: Without skyscrapers and power lines to fly into, at least a billion birds would avoid breaking their necks every year.

TREES: In New York, oaks and maples, along with the invasive Chinese ailanthus, would claim the city.

MOSQUITOES: As extermination efforts cease and wetlands rebound, great clouds of the insects would feed on other wildlife.

FERAL HOUSE CATS: They would probably do well dining on small mammals and birds in the posthuman world.

And The Losers

No doubt about it: our parasites and livestock would miss us. Below is a list of species that would probably suffer as a result of our disappearance.

DOMESTICATED CATTLE: They would become a delicious steak dinner for mountain lions,
coyotes and other predators.

RATS: Bereft of our garbage, they would either starve or
be eaten by raptors nesting in fallen buildings.

COCKROACHES: Without heated buildings to help them survive the winter, they would disappear from temperate regions.

HEAD LICE: Because these insects are so specifically adapted to humans, our demise would lead to their extinction.

Share this Article:

Comments

You must sign in or register as a ScientificAmerican.com member to submit a comment.
Scientific American Dinosaurs

Get Total Access to our Digital Anthology

1,200 Articles

Order Now - Just $39! >

X

Email this Article

X