Hawaii's Rainforests Saved from Extinction by Alien Birds

by Medindia Content Team on  October 8, 2007 at 3:41 PM Environmental Health
RSS Email Print This Page Comment bookmark
Font : A-A+

Hawaii's Rainforests Saved from Extinction by Alien Birds
Bird species introduced in Hawaii are saving rainforests by dispersing the seeds of native shrubs, a new study by scientists from the University of Illinois at Urbana- Champaign, the US, has revealed.

The extinction of several fruit eating birds as a result of habitat loss or predation by exotic mammals has prevented rainforest shrubs in the island nation from spreading their seeds to new sites the usual way.

But now, a new study by Jeff Foster and his colleagues has revealed that the Japanese white-eye and red-billed leiothrix widely disperse the seeds of these native shrubs.

The scientists analysed the stomach contents of the birds and discovered that they extensively snacked on native fruit.

Seed traps revealed that the birds were dispersing the seeds widely, allowing native shrubs to reclaim the "understorey" of Hawaiian forests.

"People tend to think of native species as good and exotic ones as bad, but it's just not that simple," said Foster.

The research appears in the current issue of the journal Conservation Biology, reports New Scientist magazine.

Source: ANI
LIN/C

Post a Comment

Comments should be on the topic and should not be abusive. The editorial team reserves the right to review and moderate the comments posted on the site.
Notify me when reply is posted
I agree to the terms and conditions

News A - Z

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

News Search

Medindia Newsletters

Subscribe to our Free Newsletters!

Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.

Find a Doctor

Stay Connected

  • Available on the Android Market
  • Available on the App Store

News Category

News Archive

Loading...