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Transcript of Biodiversity
Canada goose (Branta canadensis )
Found in Canada in the summer, Northern U.S. year round, and Southern U.S. in the winter.
Canada Geese live in a great many habitats near water, grassy fields, and grain fields. Canada Geese are particularly drawn to lawns for two reasons: they can digest grass, and when they are feeding with their young, manicured lawns give them a wide, unobstructed view of any approaching predators. So they are especially abundant in parks, airports, golf courses, and other areas with expansive lawns.
Most of what they consume consists of plants and berries. However, they will also consume small insects as well as small fish. They disperse the seeds that they consume which in turn allows the seeds to grow in new places, and they are important prey to many species.
They mate for life with very low “divorce rates,” and pairs remain together throughout the year. Geese mate “assortatively,” larger birds choosing larger mates and smaller ones choosing smaller mates; in a given pair, the male is usually larger than the female.
Eastern cottontail (Sylvilagus floridanus)
It is found from southern Manitoba and Quebec to Central and northwestern South America. In the contiguous United States, the eastern cottontail ranges from the east to the Great Plains in the west.
The eastern cottontail prefers edge environments between woody vegetation and open land. Its range of habitats includes meadows, orchards, farmlands, hedgerows and areas with second growth shrubs, vines and low deciduous trees. Though they have shown to be adaptable to other environments, human included.
Their main predators are domestic dogs and cats, coyotes, bobcats, hawks and owls. They eat a variety of plants (clovers, grass, fruits,etc.) They dig holes or burrows that are sometimes used by other organisms.
Eastern cottontails have excellent vision, hearing, and sense of smell. Eastern cottontails make many sounds. They have cries of worry that are used to startle an enemy and warn others of danger. They grunt if predators approach a nesting female and her litter.
American beaver (Castor canadensis)
American beavers are found throughout all of North America except for the northern regions of Canada and the deserts of the southern United States and Mexico.
Beavers live in lodges, of which there are three types: those built on islands, those built on the banks of ponds, and those built on the shores of lakes.
They eat a variety of plants (tree bark, leaves, roots, etc.), and are eaten by many animals (coyotes, wolves, bears, etc.) They affect water flow with there dams, choosing fish courses and areas of fresh water for many.
Beavers eat bark and cambium (the softer growing tissue under the bark of trees). Their favorites include willow, maple, poplar, beech, birch, alder, and aspen trees. They also eat water vegetation, as well as buds, and roots.
Their ears and nostrils can close while the beaver is underwater.
Turkey vulture (Cathartes aura)
Turkey vultures range as far north as the southern border of Canada and as far south as Tierra del Fuego, Chile.
Turkey vultures occupy a diverse range of habitats. They are found in forested as well as open environments. Turkey vultures can be found anywhere they can effectively find a carrion food supply. They are easily habituated to humans and human development.
Turkey vultures eat the rotting, dead carcasses of animals, both feeding themselves and cleaning up the environment. They also call areas like caves and hollowed trees home, competing with other animals for them and giving them purpose.
Turkey vultures have a well-developed sense of smell and are one of the only species of birds worldwide that uses smell extensively. They use their keen sense of smell and their vision to locate carcasses.
"Saddle bag" dragonfly (Tramea lacerata)
Tramea lacerata is found throughout much of Mexico and the United States as far north as Maine, northernmost Vermont, and Montana. This species ranges south to Baja California and Quintana Roo, Mexico, and is also found on the Hawai'ian islands, the Florida Keys, Bermuda, and Cuba. Tramea lacerata is also found in the Canadian provinces of Quebec, Ontario, and British
Tramea lacerata prefers stagnant or slow moving bodies of water, like those found in ditches, ponds, and small lakes. They flourish in bodies of water that lack predatory fishes. Still waters allow females to lay their eggs in characteristic "dipping" manner, without the eggs being swept away. Adults are often seen gliding in wetlands and grasslands near water.
They use the water to hatch there eggs in; they eat many kinds of small animals (aquatic insects, tadpoles, small fish, etc.); and are eaten by things like larger fish and birds.
Larvae are usually aggressive and well-armed predators. They can rapidly eject water from their abdomen to shoot out of the way of predators underwater.
Red winged black bird (Agelaius phoeniceus)
The bird is found year round in North America and certain parts of Central America, in Canada in the breeding season, and in the rest of Central America in the Wintering season.
Red-winged Blackbirds spend the breeding season in wet places like fresh or saltwater marshes and rice paddies. You may also find them breeding in drier places like sedge meadows, alfalfa fields, and fallow fields. Occasionally, Red-winged Blackbirds nest in wooded areas along waterways. In fall and winter, they congregate in agricultural fields, feedlots, pastures, and grassland.
The Red-winged Blackbird feeds mostly on insects, seeds, and grains from its wetland or marsh environment. They also like to eat small aquatic life and small fruits. They use the tall grasses as a camouflage, and are eaten by larger birds of prey.
Male Red-winged Blackbirds spend much of the breeding season sitting on a high perch over their territories and singing their hearts out. Females tend to slink through reeds and grasses collecting food or nest material. Both males and females defend nests from intruders and predators.
Funnel weaver spider (Agelenidae)
Prolific throughout the continental United States, Canada, Alaska, and Hawaii
Typically on or near the the ground, or low-hanging bushes. Depending on the style of siding on a structure (wood shakes, some vinyl sidings, porch eaves and beams, bricks with cracked/broken mortar, etc.), it will build a web in a corner, near a light source that will attract insects. (The structure type has to be able to form some sort of gap or recess for the "funnel" to retreat into.)
These spiders build their webs close to the ground, in grass or other low vegetation, or in abandoned small mammal burrows and they hide their eggs under bark or inside dead leaves. They eat other insects (fly, dragonfly, ladybug, etc.) and are eaten by things like fish and birds.
These spiders build their webs close to the ground, in grass or other low vegetation, or in abandoned small mammal burrows.
Argentine Ants (Linepithema humile)
Originally native to Brazil and Argentina, were introduced to the U.S. and are now found in the Southern part of North America (Maryland is included)and California.
Argentine ants can be found nesting in moist areas under debris (logs, concrete slabs, trash, and mulch) and in debris (rotten wood, faulty places in trees, refuse piles, bird nests, bee hives, and other places). They can form nests in exposed or covered soil. Argentine ants can form nests under homes and even within the home especially if their outdoor habitat is disrupted.
They eat a variety of small insects that they capture, dead insects they happen to find, nectar, or honey dew. Most ant species live in the soil. Some ants also live in wood (they excavate, but do not actually eat the wood). Some ants live in cavities made inside plants, such as acorns, twigs, and galls. They turn over and aerate the soil as much or more than earthworms
They give off a musty odor when crushed.
"All About Birds." Red-winged Blackbird, Life History,. N.p., n.d. Web. 04 June 2013.
"All About Birds." Canada Goose, Life History,. N.p., n.d. Web. 04 June 2013.
"Animal Diversity Web." ADW: Sylvilagus Floridanus: INFORMATION. N.p., n.d. Web. 04 June 2013.
"Animal Diversity Web." ADW: Castor Canadensis: INFORMATION. N.p., n.d. Web. 04 June 2013.
"Animal Diversity Web." ADW: Cathartes Aura: INFORMATION. N.p., n.d. Web. 04 June 2013.
"Animal Diversity Web." ADW: Tramea Lacerata: INFORMATION. N.p., n.d. Web. 04 June 2013.
"Mdwildlife." Mdwildlife. N.p., n.d. Web. 04 June 2013.
"Argentine Ants." : College of Agriculture, Forestry and Life Sciences : Clemson University : South Carolina. N.p., n.d. Web. 04 June 2013.
"Coccinella Septempunctata." Coccinella Septempunctata. N.p., n.d. Web. 04 June 2013.
"Field Cricket." Field Cricket. N.p., n.d. Web. 04 June 2013.
"Scotch Thistle." Noxious Weed Control Board (NWCB). N.p., n.d. Web. 04 June 2013.
"Mud Sedge (Limosa)." Mud Sedge Plant Guide. N.p., n.d. Web. 05 June 2013.
"Non-native Invasive Freshwater Plants." Washington State Department of Ecology. N.p., n.d. Web. 05 June 2013.
"White Clover." Plants.usda.gov. USDA NRCS Plant Materials Program, n.d. Web. 5 June 2013.
"PLANTS Profile for Leucanthemum Vulgare (oxeye Daisy) | USDA PLANTS." PLANTS Profile for Leucanthemum Vulgare (oxeye Daisy) | USDA PLANTS. N.p., n.d. Web. 05 June 2013.
"All About Junipers." Suite101.com. N.p., n.d. Web. 05 June 2013.
"Tree Notes." : Sassafras: The Root Beer Tree. N.p., n.d. Web. 05 June 2013.
26, June. "An Itch to Remember." Los Angeles Times. Los Angeles Times, 26 June 2011. Web. 05 June 2013.
"Virginia Creeper." Virginia Creeper. N.p., n.d. Web. 05 June 2013.
"Species - Honeysuckle / Woodbine (European )." Devon Wildlife Species. N.p., n.d. Web. 05 June 2013.
Seven-spotted lady beetle or "Ladybug" (Coccinella septempunctata)
Is a very common species, a native of the Old World that was introduced to North America multiple times for pest control. It has now spread throughout both continents and has flourished greatly.
Usually located in areas near water and with a decent amount of aphids (there usual food source.)
Ladybug larvae and adults eat aphids, mealybugs, and mites (which can harm agriculture). They are eaten by things like birds, fish, spiders, etc. This beetle will lay its eggs on a leaf or stem near food insects.
A ladybug beats its wings 85 times a second when it flies.
Ladybugs chew from side to side.
Ladybugs make a chemical that smells and tastes terrible so predators won’t eat them
Field cricket (Gryllus pennsylvanicus)
The field cricket occurs over a wide geographic range which includes most of the eastern and midwestern United States north of Florida.
Tend to be found near fresh water sources (ponds and lakes) or even damp areas, and in tall grasses, fields, or forest edges. They are very adaptable to new surroundings and can survive in human structures.
They eat fruit, nectar, seeds, small insects, some leaves, and will even nibble on dead larger animals. They are eaten by things like small snakes, mantides, spiders, and birds, and are most known for there mating call. They use the tall grass for protection against predators.
Field Crickets are most active at night. The songs of many males can be heard on Summer and Fall evenings. The song is usually a high trill played in threes.
Scotch thristle (Onopordum acanthium)
Can be found in most of North America, Europe, possibly including Britain, from Scandanavia south and east to Spain and W. Asia.
Scotch thistle will grow in wet meadows and pastures as well as dry pastures and rangelands. It may also be found alongside streams and rivers.
The scotch thistle though used for medical purposes, does not have must other use. Most animals can not eat it, due to its thick stem and spikiness. It grows like crazy and uses much needed water and space.
Scotch thistle reproduces by seed. Each plant can produce 8,400 to 40,000 seeds.
Parrot feather (Myriophyllum aquaticum)
Parrot feather is a native of the Amazon River in South America, but it has naturalized worldwide, especially in warmer climates. In the United States, the plant is found throughout the southern United States and northward along both coasts. It is found further north on the west coast because of the milder climates associated with the more northern latitudes on the west coast.
Parrot feather forms dense mats of vegetation that can entirely cover the surface of the water in shallow lakes, ponds, ditches, and backwaters in rivers. The plant does not grow out into deep water, but will colonize all shallow waters.
The tough stems make it difficult to boat, swim, fish, or water ski. It provides ideal habitat for mosquito larvae and the mass of the plant can cause flooding to occur. They can add oxygen to the water, give fish a place to hide, and cut down on algae in ponds.
Virtually all parrot feather plants are female. Male plants are unknown outside of South America, so no seeds are produced in North American populations. Since parrotfeather also lacks tubers or other specialized reproductive overwintering structures like turions, it spreads exclusively by plant fragments outside of its native range.
Oxeye daisie (Leucanthemum vulgare)
Is located throughout most of North America except for some of the far North East reaches of Canada.
It can grow in course to medium textured soils and can be found in moist to moderately dry sites, however, it does prefer abundant sunlight. Once planted as an ornamental, oxeye daisy escaped cultivation and is now common in native meadows, pastures, fields in open and thick woodlands, along waterways and roadsides. It is also found in disturbed areas, hay fields, gardens and lawns, and irrigation ditches.
Used to make tea for humans, is sweet smelling, and many animals also eat the plant.
A vigorous daisy can produce 26,000 seeds per plant, while smaller specimens produce 1,300 to 4,000 seeds per plant. Tests have shown that 82% of the buried seeds remained viable after six years, and 1% were still viable after 39 years.
Mud Sedge (Carex limosa)
Mud sedge is a boreal species found in North America from Labrador and Newfoundland to Alaska and extends south to Delaware, Iowa, Wyoming, and California
Is commonly found by bogs, wet meadows, wetlands, and the shores of ponds and lakes.
They can be eaten by livestock and harmed by parasites. There seeds can be eaten by certain animals such as birds. They are very vulnerable to climate change and cannot survive weather below -33 degrees Celsius and must have access to large amounts of water.
The Mud Sedge (Limosa) has a long life span relative to most other plant species and a slow growth rate
White clover (Trifolium repens L.)
It originated in Europe and has become one of the most widely distributed legumes in the world. It is widely distributed throughout North America.
White clover thrives best in a cool, moist climate in soils with ample lime, phosphate, and potash. In general, white clover is best adapted to clay and silt soils in humid and irrigated areas. It grows successfully on sandy soils with a high water table or irrigated droughty soils when adequately fertilized. White clover seldom roots deeper than 2 feet, which makes it adapted to shallow soils when adequate moisture is available.
White clover is a choice food for deer, elk, and many other animals. Grass seedlings benefit from the nitrogen produced by white clover included in the seed mixture. Solid stands of white clover form a good erosion controlling cover on moist fertile soils.
The leaves are composed of three leaflets, which may or may not have a “crescent” or “water mark” on the upper surface.
Juniper tree (Juniperus communis)
The common juniper grows in the northern areas of North America, Asia and Europe, which gives it one of the widest of geographic ranges for any woody shrub or tree.
The tree is found in many ecosystems. It doesn't need much water or sunlight and has survived many different types of conditions, such as the Rocky Mountains.
Provides food and shelter for many species of birds and mammals.The birds and mammals that eat the “berries” from the female plants are crucial in dispersing juniper seeds. Junipers also serve as roosting and nesting sites for many of our native birds.
In the first 20 years of its life, the average juniper will grow to be a full five feet tall.
Sassafras tree (Sassafras albidum)
Sassafras trees are native to most of the eastern United States.
This plant is a pioneer tree on disturbed sites in its native range. It is adapted to various soils with low pH. It can be found in woodlands, fields and along roadsides.
The leaves and twigs are eaten by White-tailed Deer. Leaves are also eaten by Woodchucks and Eastern Cottontails. Stems are munched on by American Beaver. Fruits are eaten by many birds, including: Great Crested Flycatchers, Wild Turkey, Pileated Woodpeckers, Flickers, and Northern Mockingbirds. Small mammals also eat the fruit. Caterpillars of butterflies, such as the Eastern Tiger Swallowtail, eat leaves also. Sassafras counts on animals to eat its fruit. Most animals do not digest the seeds. Later, when the animal poops, the seed has been move to a new place and can grow a new tree. European Gypsy Moths, a pest to most trees, only eat Sassafras if other trees, such as oaks, are not available. They actually help Sassafras grow when they eat leaves of other trees. This allows more sunlight to reach the shorter Sassafras. Oil from Sassafras sap, taken from the bark and roots, is also used to perfume soap, and to flavor tea and rootbeer.
As a tree, the Sassafras can grow up to 60 feet.
Poison Ivy (Toxicodendron radicans)
A native plant to North America, it's all over the country except California, Alaska, and Hawaii
It is commonly found along the edges of your back yard, growing up trees and fences, along walkways and paths, and intertwined in shrubbery and flowers. Very rarely will you find it deep in the woods.
Can be used to help erosion. It's poison does not harm animals but animals can be carriers of the oil. It is extremely irritating to human skin.
This three leaf plant carries an oil on its leaves and in its stems & roots called Urushiol (You-roo-she-all). It is poisonous in a way such that it inflicts an anaphylactic (allergic) reaction of redness, rashes, itchiness, and sensitivity on all contacted areas in 9 out of 10 people.
Virginia creeper (Parthenocissus quinquefolia)
The Virginia creeper is very common in the mid-western to Eastern portion of North America.
Virginia Creeper can grow just about anywhere. It grows in forests, fields, gardens, and along banks of streams or lakes. It can grow in shade or sun. Virginia Creeper grows up tree trunks and other surfaces by grabbing on with tendrils. Tendrils are like little arms that grab. Virgnia Creeper tendrils have little adhesive pads at the end that stick to the surface.
The berries of this plant are eaten by many animals, especially birds, including: Eastern Bluebird, Northern Cardinal, chickadees, woodpeckers, and Turkey. Other animals, such as mice, skunks, chipmunks, squirrels, and deer eat them too. White-tailed Deer also munch on the leaves and stems. Virginia Creeper berries are poisonous to humans. Many moth caterpillars, such as the Giant Leopard Moth, eat the leaves. Because of its thick foliage (leaves), this plant is great cover for small animals. Virginia Creeper will grow up just about any pine tree or hardwood tree, such as oaks and hickories. It will also grow over most shrubs. This species will become a parasite, and often slowly kill the host it grows on.
The leaves are green, but are tinted with red when they first grow. In the Fall, all the leaves turn deep red. Leaflets are three to seven inches long, and up to two inches wide.
Woodbine honeysuckle (Lonicera periclymenum)
Native to the Northern Hemisphere. There are about 180 species of honeysuckle, 100 of which occur in China. Europe, India and North America have about 20 native species each.
It is often found in woodland, hedgerows or scrubland. It is commonly grown as a garden plant, and numerous varieties have been developed for this purpose.
They produce sweet edible nectar favoured by bees, bumblebees, humming birds, butterflies and moths. Their long flowering season, strong night scent and pale cream colour make this a classic ‘moth plant’ although the long flower tube means that only larger moths (e.g. hummingbird hawk moth, Macroglossum stellatarum) with a long probosis can gain access. The fruit is usually a bright red but occasionally blue or black berry containing several seeds popular with some bird species such as bullfinches, warblers and thrushes but mildly poisonous for humans. Birds may be most significant carriers of seed.
Most shrub honeysuckles grow 6 to 15 feet tall and wide, while the vine types grow 10 to 20 feet tall.