By Egbert G. Leigh
The tropical wooded area of Panama's Barro Colorado Island is a luxuriant group of crops and animals, pulsating with lifestyles and supplying an amazing view of nature's myriad methods. What does the woodland seem like? How do the actions of this forest's crops and animals create a group? Now, in A Magic internet, photographer Christian Ziegler and ecologist Egbert Leigh invite readers to go into the brilliant international of Barro Colorado Island. This e-book offers a distinct blend of the incredible images of a picture-book and transparent, authoritative textual content written via an lively scientist who has spent part an entire life attempting to comprehend tropical forests. the pictures supply perspectives of the woodland and its stunning range of population, and convey a number of the actions that supply the wooded area its personality and lend constitution to its neighborhood. Drawing on a long time of labor on Barro Colorado Island, Egbert Leigh explains how the woodland works. the pictures and textual content exhibit the various methods its crops and animals compete with but in addition depend upon one another: the contrasts among solitary cats and intricately equipped armies of ants; the several methods vegetation fight for a spot within the solar, and the methods those crops allure, or cultivate, animals to pollinate their flora. eventually, the authors exhibit why this, and by way of implication all different, tropical forests subject to the folk who stay close to them and to the area at huge, what we will examine from those forests, and the way they vary from temperate-zone forests. choked with wonderful full-color photos followed by means of transparent and available textual content, A Magic internet is a needs to for somebody making plans to go to a tropical wooded area, and for all those that in basic terms want they can.
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Extra info for A Magic Web: The Forest of Barro Colorado Island
They have fascinated artists as different as Frederick Church and Henri Rousseau, and attracted biologists of the stature of Charles Darwin and Alfred Russel Wallace. Today, many graduate students, following in their footsteps, sacrifice income and comfort to work in these beautiful forests. In the New World, as in Madagascar, the grim and devastating trade in endangered species is fueled by fascination with the wonders of tropical nature: orchids with their many colors, shapes, and perfumes; guppies, piranhas, and other strange fishes of tropical rivers; chameleons, diverse in shape and changeable in color; spotted cats; macaws splashed with garish hues; and amiable, furry lemurs and monkeys, so full of personality and designing intelligence.
Lohn Barone, a graduate student at the University of Utah working on Barro Colorado, found instead that tropical saplings suffer most of their damage (fig. 27) from pests specialized to handle the poisons in the sufferer's species, and perhaps a few close relatives. Even in natural tropical forests, where trees of each kind are scattered among a multitude of others, young leaves are much more heavily eaten, despite being much more poisonous, than young leaves of deciduous temperatezone trees. Plant trees of one species together in an extensive tropical plantation and their pests will spread quickly from one tree to the next, defoliating them, or devouring their seeds or seedlings, just as diseases spread through an overcrowded refugee camp.
Here, a bruchid beetle, Speciomerusgiganteus, emerges from a seed of the palm/lffa/ec Mt/racea (fig. 25).
A Magic Web: The Forest of Barro Colorado Island by Egbert G. Leigh