Rainforest Tree Houses
Award-winning author/illustrator Caroline Arnold invites readers to hunker down in the Amazon from sunrise to sunrise and experience one 24-hour cycle of animal activity in the rain forest habitat, starting and ending with--cricka, cricka!--a noisy toucan call. Her cut-paper illustrations, story-like text, and features such as sidebars, fun facts, and a glossary dazzle and delight.
Tropical climates, which occur between 23 30'N and S latitude (Jacob 1988), encompass a wide variety of plant communities (Hartshorn 1983, 1988), many of which are diverse in their woody floras. Within this geographic region, temperature and the amount and seasonality of rainfall define habitat types (UNESCO 1978). The F AO has estimated that there 1 are about 19 million km of potentially forested area in the global tropics, of which 58% were estimated to still be in closed forest in the mid-1970s (Sommers 1976; UNESCO 1978). Of this potentially forested region, 42% is categorized as dry forest lifezone, 33% is tropical moist forest, and 25% is wet or rain forest (Lugo 1988). The species diversity of these tropical habitats is very high. Raven (1976, in Mooney 1988) estimated that 65% of the 250,000 or more plant species of the earth are found in tropical regions. Of this floristic assemblage, a large fraction are woody species. In the well-collected tropical moist forest of Barro Colorado Island, Panama, 39. 7% (481 of 1212 species) of the native phanerogams are woody, arborescent species (Croat 1978). Another 21. 9% are woody vines and lianas. Southeast Asian Dipterocarp forests may contain 120-200 species of trees per hectare (Whitmore 1984), and recent surveys in upper Amazonia re- corded from 89 to 283 woody species ~ 10 cm dbh per hectare (Gentry 1988). Tropical communities thus represent a global woody flora of significant scope.
Why do Australian rainforests occur as islands within the vast tracts of Eucalyptus? Why is fire a critical ecological factor in every Australian landscape? What were the consequences of the use of fire by the Ice Age colonists? In this original and challenging book, David Bowman critically examines all hypotheses that have been advanced to answer these questions. He demonstrates that fire is the most critical factor in controlling the distribution of rainforest throughout Australia. Furthermore, while Aboriginal people used fire to skillfully manage and preserve habitats, he concludes that they did not significantly influence the evolution of Australia's unique flora and fauna. This volume, the first comprehensive overview of the diverse literature on this topic, solves the puzzle of the archipelago of rainforest habitats in Australia. It is essential reading for all ecologists, foresters, conservation biologists, and others interested in the biogeography and ecology of Australian rainforests.
In this highly original work, Teed Rockwell rejects both dualism and the mind-brain identity theory. He proposes instead that mental phenomena emerge not merely from brain activity but from an interacting nexus of brain, body, and world. The mind can be seen not as an organ within the body, but as a "behavioral field" that fluctuates within this brain-body-world nexus. If we reject the dominant form of the mind-brain identity theory -- which Rockwell calls "Cartesian materialism" (distinct from Daniel Dennett's concept of the same name) -- and accept this new alternative, then many philosophical and scientific problems can be solved. Other philosophers have flirted with these ideas, including Dewey, Heidegger, Putnam, Millikan, and Dennett. But Rockwell goes further than these tentative speculations and offers a detailed alternative to the dominant philosophical view, applying pragmatist insights to contemporary scientific and philosophical problems.Rockwell shows that neuroscience no longer supports the mind-brain identity theory because the brain cannot be isolated from the rest of the nervous system; moreover, there is evidence that the mind is hormonal as well as neural. These data, and Rockwell's reanalysis of the concept of causality, show why the borders of mental embodiment cannot be neatly drawn at the skull, or even at the skin. Rockwell then demonstrates how his proposed view of the mind can resolve paradoxes engendered by the mind-brain identity theory in such fields as neuroscience, artificial intelligence, epistemology, and philosophy of language. Finally, he argues that understanding the mind as a "behavioral field" supports the new cognitive science paradigm of dynamic systems theory (DST).
During the last decade, forest decline has become increasingly apparent. The decline in forest health was often reported to be associated with air pollution. The present study on Norway spruce stands in the Fichtelgebirge analyses various processes interacting within forest ecosystems. It covers transport and deposition of air pollutants, the direct effects of pollutants on above-ground plant parts, the responses of soil to acid rain, and the changing nutrient availability, and the accompanying effects on plant metabolism and growth. The role of fungi, microorganisms and soil animals in the decline of these stands is also assessed. The volume is concluded with a synthesis evaluation of the influence of different factors, and their interactions on forest decline.
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