DK Eyewitness Books: Ecology by Brian Lane, Steve Pollock

By Brian Lane, Steve Pollock

Here's a amazing, thought-provoking, and hugely informative advisor to the interesting tale of ecology. extraordinary colour images of animals, crops, and ecosystems show the guidelines and discoveries that experience replaced our knowing of lifestyles round us. See how vegetation shop their nutrition provide, how dung enriches the soil, how biodiversity is measured, the wear as a result of acid rain, and a field-digger wasp taking pictures a fly. find out how vegetation create their very own nutrients, how and whilst the world's human inhabitants "exploded", how your again backyard presents a small-scale version of lifestyles all around the Earth. detect the hyperlinks within the beach nutrition chain, how the buffalo was once kept from extinction, why bugs reminiscent of locusts are topic to inhabitants explosion, traditional pest keep an eye on, and lots more and plenty, even more!

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MARKING It is often helpful to mark an animal so that its movements and habits can be traced, but the method used must be carefully chosen to avoid changing the animal’s behaviour. This bird is having a ring fitted to its leg. Fish can have a tag attached to a fin, and some mammals can be tagged through the ear. A larger animal can be fitted with a radio collar so that its movements can be tracked using a radio receiver. Sampling populations GROWTH RINGS An animal’s age can be worked out in a variety of ways – for example, by looking at the wear on a mammal’s teeth.

5 kg (3 lb 5 oz) of material (mainly wood) per sq m (10 sq ft) every year. The canopy produces a wide range of fruits, seeds, and berries, but since young plants cannot grow in the shadow of their parents, the seeds must be dispersed. Brightly coloured berries attract birds that feed on them, and the seeds are then passed out in the droppings, away from the parent plant. Sycamore seeds have wings that allow the wind to carry them away as they fall. On the forest floor, mosses grow on rotting branches, and the annual fall of leaves – around 3 tonnes per hectare (2,600 lb per acre) – provides food for other organisms, such as the fungi and tiny animals that break all this down and recycle the nutrients.

Browsers of different sizes reach different parts of the vegetation, so while giraffes feed on high branches, eland feed on lower leaves and twigs, and the tiny dik-dik antelope eats the lowest growth. Every species occupies its own niche and avoids direct competition with other species, although their needs may well overlap. This diagram shows how different species divide up the grasslands. Waterbuck Sitatunga Elephant Bushbuck Lechwe Klipspringer Puku Impala Oribi Reedbuck Hartebeest Eland Buffalo Grant’s gazelle Giraffe Warthog KEY Zebra Usual habitat Wildebeest Roan antelope Occasional excursions S F  Black rhino O  B    48 R  (c) 2011 Dorling Kindersley, Inc.

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