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Jürgens, N. 2013. The Biological Underpinnings of Namib Desert Fairy Circles. Science, 339(6127): 1618-1621


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The Biological Underpinnings of Namib Desert Fairy Circles.

Summary / Notes:

The sand termite Psammotermes allocerus generates local ecosystems, so-called fairy circles, through removal of short-lived vegetation that appears after rain, leaving circular barren patches. Because of rapid percolation and lack of evapotranspiration, water is retained within the circles. This process results in the formation of rings of perennial vegetation that facilitate termite survival and locally increase biodiversity. This termite-generated ecosystem persists through prolonged droughts lasting many decades.

Year: 2013

Type: Journal Article

URL: http://www.sciencemag.org/content/339/6127/1618

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