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 World’s biggest, oldest trees are dying

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PurpleSkyz
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PostSubject: World’s biggest, oldest trees are dying    Thu Dec 27, 2012 12:53 am


World’s biggest, oldest trees are dying






Scientists
recently warned of an alarming increase in the death rates of the
largest living organisms on the planet, the giant, old trees that
harbour and sustain countless birds and wildlife. New research conducted
by universities in Australia and the United States reveals ecosystems
worldwide are in danger of losing forever their largest and oldest trees
unless there were policy changes to better protect them.

Professor David Lindenmayer from the Australian Fenner School of
Environment and Society, says the threats these trees face are manifold
and populations around the world are rapidly declining. Lindenmayer,
the lead author of a study points that it’s a worldwide problem and
appears to be happening in most types of forest. Lindenmayer, along with
colleagues from the James Cook University in Australia and Washington
University in America, undertook their study after examining Swedish
forestry records going back to the 1860s. They found alarming losses of
big trees, ranging from 100 to 300 years old, at all latitudes in
Europe, North America, Africa, Asia, South America, Latin America and
Australia.

Mountain ash in Australia, pine trees in America, California
redwoods, and baobabs in Tanzania are amongst badly affected. The study
showed that forest fires destroys trees in large numbers, however, new
findings show that trees were also perishing at 10 times the normal rate
in non-fire years. A combination of rapid climate change causing
drought and high temperatures, as well as rampant logging and
agricultural land clearing are main cause for such situation.

The loss of the biggest living organisms on the planet, of the
largest flowering plants on the planet, of organisms that play a key
role in regulating and enriching our world is very serious issue. The
study outlines the unique ecological roles large old trees play, roles
that younger and smaller tress cannot fulfil. Large old trees play
critical ecological roles, providing nesting or sheltering cavities for
up to 30% of all birds and animals in some ecosystems. They also store
huge amounts of carbon, recycle soil nutrients, create rich patches for
other life to thrive in, and influence the flow of water within
landscapes. Big trees supply abundant food for numerous animals in the
form of fruits, flowers, foliage and nectar and their hollows offer
nests and shelter for birds and animals, so their loss could mean
extinction for such creatures.Full story Thewatchers


Thanks to: http://aworldchaos.wordpress.com


  

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