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Latest Herbivore Stories

2012-09-13 23:48:44

The Borderea chouardii plant, which is critically endangered and is found only on two adjacent cliff sides in the Pyrenees, employs a unique and risky doubly mutualistic reproductive strategy with local ants, according to research published Sep. 12 in the open access journal PLOS ONE. The researchers, led by Maria Garcia of the Pyrenean Institute of Ecology (CSIC), found that two ant species acted as the main pollinators for the plant, while a third species dispersed seeds. About a third...

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2012-08-07 07:30:47

April Flowers for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Scientists have debated how big a role elephants play in toppling trees in South African savannas for years. Now, using some very high tech airborne equipment, they finally have an answer. Tree loss is a natural process, but in some regions it is increasing beyond what could naturally be expected. This extreme tree loss has cascading effects on the habitats of many species. Studying savannas across Kruger National Park, Carnegie...

2012-06-08 13:40:34

Inflorescence architecture of Babiana ringens may have evolved in response to selective pressures from both herbivores and pollinators Floral displays, such as the color, shape, size, and arrangement of flowers, are typically thought to have evolved primarily in response to selection by pollinators–for animal-pollinated species, being able to attract animal vectors is vital to an individual plant's reproductive success. But can herbivores also exert similarly strong selective forces...

2012-06-01 10:10:12

Major new marine herbivory study Coral reefs and seashores largely look the way they do because large fish and urchins eat most of the seaweed that might otherwise cover them, but a major new study has found that the greatest impact of all comes from an unexpected quarter — small marine snails. The study published in the journal Ecology Letters is the largest of its kind ever undertaken into the ecological impacts of marine grazing animals: it was led by Associate Professor...

Tobacco Plants Advertise They Are Ready To Attack Leafhoppers
2012-05-23 10:25:32

Like blood-sucking insects, herbivores evaluate their host's readiness for defense Tobacco: actually pretty bad food for leafhoppers Empoasca sp. is not a typical pest of wild tobacco (Nicotiana attenuata). When this plant grows in its natural habitats in North America, however, it is attacked by tobacco hornworm larvae (Manduca sexta). This specialist insect is resistant to the toxic nicotine, which the plant produces as a defense against its enemies. When researchers from the Max...

Evolution In An Island, The Secret For A Longer Life
2012-04-25 07:50:24

ICP researchers published today in the 'Proceedings of the Royal Society B' one of the first fossil-based evidences supporting the evolutionary theory of ageing, which predicts that species evolving in low mortality and resource-limited ecosystems tend to be more long-lived. The study shows that the tooth height of endemic insular mammals is an indicator of longevity, and questions the use of this morphological characteristic as an exclusive indicator to infer the diet of fossil species,...

Omnivores Play For Both Teams
2012-04-17 10:34:47

Just because a bear prefers the taste of flesh today doesn´t mean it has always been so. A new study has investigated the previous eating habits of mammals, particularly omnivores, to discover how their eating habits have evolved. Large cats, such as lions and tigers are known carnivores, eating meat almost exclusively. On the other hand, other mammals such as cows, deer, and other livestock are herbivores, eating bark, grass, and fruit. Eating a mixture of plants and meat, however,...

Everything Within Balance: As Predators Decrease, Ecosystems Suffer
2012-04-10 12:37:03

As predators dwindle in the Northern Hemisphere, populations of their would-be prey begin to flourish. A new survey suggests such large populations are harmful to their specific ecosystems. Scientists from Oregon State University examined 42 studies from the past 50 years and found that as wolves disappear from the northern United States, Canada, and Alaska, populations of moose and deer swell. The resulting boom in moose and deer populations can be harmful to other living things in the...

2011-10-04 12:15:46

As climate change causes temperatures to rise, the number of herbivores will decrease, affecting the human food supply, according to new research from the University of Toronto. In a paper being published this month in American Naturalist, a team of ecologists describe how differences in the general responses of plants and herbivores to temperature change produces predictable declines in herbivore populations. This decrease occurs because herbivores grow more quickly at high temperatures...

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2011-08-09 07:35:00

How rodents survive arms race with toxic plants they eat Life is tough for woodrats in deserts of the U.S. Southwest. There are few plants for food, and those plants produce poison to deter rodents, insects and other animals. A new University of Utah study shows how certain woodrats put themselves on a diet to avoid poisoning: They sample a smorgasbord of toxic plants, eat smaller meals, increase time between meals and drink more water if it is available. "For decades, we have been trying to...


Word of the Day
ween
  • To think; to imagine; to fancy.
  • To be of opinion; have the notion; think; imagine; suppose.
The word 'ween' comes from Middle English wene, from Old English wēn, wēna ("hope, weening, expectation"), from Proto-Germanic *wēniz, *wēnōn (“hope, expectation”), from Proto-Indo-European *wen- (“to strive, love, want, reach, win”).
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