HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Tropical scientists find fewer species than expected

MINNEAPOLIS / ST. PAUL--An eight-year National Science Foundation-funded study of New Guinean rainforest plants and the insects that feed on them has yielded a new and dramatically lower estimate of the number of species on the planet. The estimate, which lowers the number of species from approximately 31 million to between four and six million, is based on the finding that insects specialize their feeding not on individual species of plants, but on genera and even families of plants. In "bringing some reality" to estimates of world biodiversity, the study allows scientists to get a better handle on how fast species are being lost, said University of Minnesota plant biologist George Weiblen, the principal plant expert on the research team. The work will be published in the April 25 issue of Nature.

It is important to know how fast biodiversity is being lost, but this is hard to gauge without a solid baseline, Weiblen said. Scientists advising governments on policies to curtail species losses must have credible estimates of species numbers if they are to shape appropriate policies. The stakes are high because losses of too many species or certain kinds of species can cripple tropical forest ecosystems, which normally stabilize soil and climate, purify and recycle water, and produce food, medicine, building materials or other useful products, he said.

The current study took a cross-disciplinary approach; besides Weiblen, the principal scientists were insect expert and project coordinator Scott Miller of the Smithsonian Institution and insect community ecologists Yves Basset of the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute in Panama and Voytech Novotny of the Czech Academy of Sciences.

The team compared insect communities feeding on 51 tropical plant species, most belonging to either the fig family, the mulberry family or the coffee family. While previous work had also based estimates of total species on numbers of insects--the most species-rich
'"/>

Contact: Deane Morrison
morri029@umn.edu
612-624-2346
University of Minnesota
24-Apr-2002


Page: 1 2 3

Related biology news :

1. Tropical legume could be alternative hay/forage crop for Texas
2. Tropical deforestation and global warming
3. Arthropods of Tropical Forests
4. Tropical Science for the 21st Century
5. A Magic Web: The Tropical Forest of Barro Colorado
6. Ira Rubinoff honored by the Association for Tropical Biology
7. Tropical forests under surveillance
8. Sessions on bioterrorism featured at Tropical Medicine Meeting
9. Tropical glaciers formed while earth was giant snowball
10. Chemistry in the Amazon: Tropical birds, Amazonian tribespeople derive medicinal benefits from insects, plants
11. Tropical tree distribution could have implications for forest management, conservation

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
TAG: Tropical scientists find fewer species than expected

(Date:12/10/2014)... RALEIGH, N.C. , Dec. 9, 2014  Valencell, ... announced it is seeing a staggering demand from its ... demand, the Company revealed, is not solely coming from ... industries as well. "A wearable is only ... a result, accuracy is the ultimate driver in long-term ...
(Date:12/5/2014)... MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. , Dec. 4, 2014 ... and safety has boosted investments in new testing ... products has also given rise to a range ... driven by the requirements of Generation Y, which ... digital technologies. As a result, product development strategies ...
(Date:11/21/2014)... , November 18, 2014 According ... Market by Systems (Video, RFID, Access Control, Intrusion Detection, ... Hotels, Banks, Government), Component Service Geography - Global Forecasts ... Market is projected to be around $25 Billion in ... 2020, growing at a CAGR of 8.69%. ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):Wearable Technology Products Demand Highly Accurate Biometric Technology 2Emerging Technologies Enable Smarter Monitoring of Assets, Push Industrial Testing, Inspection and Monitoring Market 2Emerging Technologies Enable Smarter Monitoring of Assets, Push Industrial Testing, Inspection and Monitoring Market 3Emerging Technologies Enable Smarter Monitoring of Assets, Push Industrial Testing, Inspection and Monitoring Market 4Industrial Security Systems Market Worth $38 Billion by 2020 2Industrial Security Systems Market Worth $38 Billion by 2020 3
(Date:12/22/2014)... GenomeDx Biosciences today announced that a new ... genomic test for prostate cancer, was able to predict ... radical prostatectomy without adjuvant therapy. Although rapid metastasis in ... tumor genomics to identify these men who have a ... advance. The study has been published online by ...
(Date:12/19/2014)... PA (PRWEB) December 19, 2014 ... leading developer and manufacturer of needle-free injection technology, ... agreement with Immunomic Therapeutics, Inc. (“ITI”) for ITI ... device with its LAMP™ vaccine platform. , ... an exclusive Worldwide license to the Biojector®-2000 that ...
(Date:12/19/2014)... Bina Technologies, Inc. (Bina, Redwood ... have been acquired by Roche (SIX: RO, ROG; OTCQX: ... company that provides a big data platform for centralized ... for the academic and translational research markets.  Bina will ... continue to focus on development of their innovative genomic ...
(Date:12/19/2014)... LayerBio is an MIT spin-off developing novel drug ... Eye Institute (NEI) at the National Institutes of Health ... to develop a drug-eluting intraocular lens (IOL) for cataract ... vision loss in people over age 40 and the ... Mandell, LayerBio’s Founder and CEO, "There is a critical ...
Breaking Biology Technology:Study Published in European Urology Shows that the Decipher Prostate Cancer Classifier is Predictive of Rapid Metastasis in High-Risk Men who have had Prostate Surgery 2Study Published in European Urology Shows that the Decipher Prostate Cancer Classifier is Predictive of Rapid Metastasis in High-Risk Men who have had Prostate Surgery 3Bioject and Immunomic Therapeutics Enter into an Agreement for License of Needle-Free Technology for LAMP-vax Vaccines 2Bioject and Immunomic Therapeutics Enter into an Agreement for License of Needle-Free Technology for LAMP-vax Vaccines 3Bina Technologies is acquired by Roche. 2Bina Technologies is acquired by Roche. 3LayerBio Awarded NIH Grant to Develop a Drug Delivery Device for Cataract Surgery 2
Cached News: