Interested in Language
Which one is better in the sentence below, 'would be found' or 'would have been found'? And why?
"In 1950s, Colorado beetles were able to resist chemical insecticides. A scientist hypothesized that bacteria living in the beetles' environment were killing many beetles, because otherwise the beetles [ would be found / would have been found ] in larger numbers."
Thank you very much in advance.
Either form is possible. The first would be appropriate if the hypothetical finding of the beetles were to be happening at the same time as the hypothesising about the bateria; the second, if the hypothetical finding had preceded the hypothesising.