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another group altering the land and interfering with evolution  RSS feed

 
gardener
Posts: 823
Location: western pennsylvania zone 5/a
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"Everything gardens" I heard this somewhere....

these guys are changing the natural permafrost environment!!!
displacing creatures that live on grey barren ground

http://news.nationalgeographic.com/2016/05/160520-arctic-foxes-animals-science-alaska/

WEIRD & WILD
Arctic Foxes 'Grow' Their Own Gardens
The little carnivores' colorful dens provide veritable oases in the tundra, a new study says

BARROW, ALASKA The underground homes, often a century old, are topped with gardens exploding with lush dune grass, diamondleaf willows, and yellow wildflowers—a flash of color in an otherwise gray landscape.



“These animals are fertilizing and basically growing a garden."

Gardens that create such a stark contrast on the tundra that scientists who recently published the first scientific study on the dens have dubbed the foxes "ecosystem engineers."




Tundra Oases
These tundra oases are beyond just being postcard beautiful: They boost the Arctic environment.

And that means more food options in a place without many, says Jim Roth of the University of Manitoba, a co-author on the recent study.

Greater plant diversity gives herbivores a spot to forage during short summers, he explains. (See National Geographic photos of Arctic animals.)

“Lots of other species visit these dens,” adds Roth, who has been studying arctic foxes since 1994. “Caribou and other herbivores are attracted to the lush vegetation, and scavengers come looking for goose carcasses.”

 
pollinator
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Location: Central Texas USA Latitude 30 Zone 8
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How long have they been doing this? Is it recent behavior?

 
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