Category Archives: Ecosystems

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Benefits of Invasive Plants

According to the research, the existence of invasive plants in invaded sites can increase visits from insects to the majority of native plants. In this way the ‘floral market’ hypothesis in which only the invasive flowers are seen to benefit and the native flowers are no longer visited by insects is contradicted.

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Seed dispersal and Extinct dispersers in Island Communities – A Complex Mix

Thus, dispersal away from the maternal tree – or probably any adult conspecific – is apparently crucial for this species. We demonstrate that Aldabra giant tortoises could be used as ecological analogues to provide seed dispersal services, and thus resurrect the functional component of some of the extinct endemic frugivores in Mauritius.

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Three Centuries Of Draining Wetlands

Standard notions of the natural eastern US landscape with its meandering ribbon-like streams may be misguided, suggests historical research.

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Saving Trees Can Kill Them

…as the beasts have been kept away, the whole ecology of the fenced areas has changed. The trees growth patterns slowed; many sickened, and their death rate doubled; they produced fewer thorns for the ants to use as homes and less nectar for the ants to eat.

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Africa’s Acacias Struck By Cancer

You can never underestimate the importance of the Acacia karroo. So anything that threatens its existence constitutes a major worry. We are particularly worried by its propensity to jump hosts.

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Climate Change, Flying Foxes And Mass Extinctions

They are a keystone species for forest environments… There are lots of other species whose fate may also be in serious doubt.

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A Plant Needs Its Mother

…Plants grown in the same setting as their maternal plant performed almost 3½ times better than those raised in a different environment — indicating that maternal plants give cues to their offspring that help them adapt to their environmental conditions.

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Plant Extinctions Leave Permanent Gaps

The results showed that ecosystems with fewer plant species produced up to 50 percent less plant biomass than those with more natural levels of plant diversity. You might think extinctions would just mean other plants would take over and fill in the gaps, but that is not the case, the scientists found.

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Invasive Plants Have An Edge

We’ve seen this capability in a number of invasive plants that have come from Eurasia, such as garlic mustard… The roots exude a toxin that kills native plants.