Deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) is a long chain organic molecule that contains the coding for all metabolic and reproductive processes of all living organisms, save for certain...
Nama KarooLast Updated on 2015-07-01 22:57:08
WWF Terrestrial Ecoregions Collection
The Nama Karoo is a vast, open, arid region in southern Africa dominated by low-shrub vegetation, punctuated by rugged relief. Although not remarkably rich in species or endemism, the flora and fauna of the region are impressively adapted to its climatic extremes. The major threats to biodiversity are posed by pastoralism, introduction of alien species of plants, mining and conversion of native habitat to agriculture, all exacerbated by the fact that very little - less than one percent - of the ecoregion is conserved.
Most of the Nama Karoo occurs on the central plateau of the Cape Province in South Africa, although it extends over the Orange River into Namibia in the northwest. The Great Escarpment, which runs parallel to the coast 100 kilometres (km) to 200 km inland, divides the ecoregion into two... More »
East African montane moorlandsLast Updated on 2015-07-01 19:34:45
The East African montane moorlands is a relatively small alpine ecoregion in eastern Africa. The habitat is virtually treeless since it occupies a zone above the treeline. This ecoregion, classified as an element of the montane grasslands and scrublands biome, has a land area measuring only about 1300 square miles. The ecoregion, lying at the upper zones of ancient volcanoes, exhibits low species richness of higher level faunal organisms, but manifests moderate plant and animal endemism, including support of certain extremophiles. There is particularly high endemism among amphibians and small mammals of the ecoregion. Many of the plant species that occur in the ecoregion have adapted interesting morphological features to allow survival in the extreme cold here.
The upper elevations of the ecoregion have persistent glacial cover. Although some of the ecoregion (e.g. Mount Kilamanjaro)... More »
HerbivoreLast Updated on 2015-06-11 10:34:01A herbivore is an animal that derives energy and nutrients by feeding on plants. Different types of herbivores eat different plant parts. For example, folivores feed on leaves, frugivores feed on fruits, granivores feed on seeds, pollinivores feed on pollen, and nectarivores feed on nectar. Herbivores can vary greatly in size, ranging from the largest terrestrial animals (elephants) and large marine mammals such as manatees and dugongs, to small insects, nematodes, and thrips. Herbivores are primary consumers (they receive their energy by consuming primary producers), so they play an important trophic role in ecological communities and food webs.
Because mature leaves are low in nutrients, and difficult to digest because of their high cellulose content, animals use many different strategies to eat leaves. Animals that feed on grass leaves are generally... More »
ComorosLast Updated on 2015-06-03 13:33:51Comoros is a nation of 730,000 people composed of three islands (Ngazidja or "Grande Comore", Mwali or "Mohéli" and Nzwani or "Anjouan") in the Indian Ocean, at the northern mouth of the Mozambique Channel, about two-thirds of the way between northern Madagascar and northern Mozambique.
Comoros also claims a fourth island Mayotte or "Mahoré" which is under French administration. One of the world's poorest countries, the islands comprising Comoros have inadequate transportation links, a young and rapidly increasing population, and few natural resources. The country is not self-sufficient in food production. Rice, the main staple, accounts for the bulk of imports.
The low educational level of the labor force contributes to a subsistence level of economic activity, high unemployment, and a... More »
Zambezian flooded grasslandsLast Updated on 2015-06-01 15:56:03
WWF Terrestrial Ecoregions Collection
Located within the miombo and mopane woodlands of the Central African Plateau, Zambezian flooded grasslands are an anomaly of productivity and abundance in a landscape characterized by nutrient deficient soil and associated vegetation. Unlike the surrounding woodlands that generally support animals only in rather low densities, the wetlands and floodplains of this ecoregion provide habitats to sizable faunal populations, since food and water are abundant throughout the majority of the year. Large populations of waterbirds gather during the rainy season, and numerous herd animals and carnivores frequent the landscape. However, in a climate of rapid population growth and increasing need for land and natural resources, this fragile ecoregion may face increasing threat. Several conservation measures... More »
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