Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Termites, earth builders

For those of you who have followed my tropical biodiversity blog, you know that our soils are extremely poor. It's the litter on the ground that provides food to the forest. Termites play a big role in decomposing this litter into nutrition. I was overwhelmed to see the amount of organic soil left behind by the termites after abandoning their nests, per the previous post. We distributed wheelbarrows of it to new trees and plants around the reception center. I would say, "long live the termites", but there's no need. They will inherit the earth after we destroy it. And they will rebuild it!

3 comments:

Alex Gallafent said...

Dear Steven,

I'm a reporter with The World program, on public radio in the US. It's a co-production of the BBC World Service.

I'll be in Manaus at the end of the week on a reporting trip. I'll be doing stories on a variety of subjects, including deforestation.

There might be some material that you could use on your blog, if it were of interest. At the very least, would you be happy for me to link to your site from mine? It'd be great if you were willing to do the same. My blog will feed Amazon posts directly to the show's website, which is www.theworld.org, for your information.

Thanks and congratulations on a great site!

Best,
Alex Gallafent

Steven Alexander said...

Alex, many thanks for looking at my tropical biodiversity blog. Glad that you liked it. By all means, let's trade links, feeds, whatever. Your site is a bit heavy for my poor internet connection here in Santarem, but I did have a look and I liked it. Have a good trip to Manaus.

Sandpiper said...

It's fascinating the power these tiny insects have. Interesting how different the mounds look from the African ones, too. If you haven't seen them, you should do a Google image search for African Termite Mounds. They're amazing, too.