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Can only evapotranspiration make a tree?

Can only evapotranspiration make a tree?

Biologists have been unable to explain fully why some locales have numerous plant or animal species, while others do not. Theories to explain this variability include climate and glacial movement preventing the spread of species. But the single most important reason, say scientists from Ontario's University of Ottawa, is evapotranspiration --the total amount of water that passes through a given biological system, including evaporation and moisture released from plants during photosynthesis. David J. Currie and Viviane Paquin used U.S. Forest Service information to determine the numbers of tree species in various locations in North America (see map). By comparing the map with data on climate and other factors, the scientists conclude in the Sept. 24 NATURE that, although individual species may come and go in a specific area, the amount of available water will keep that area's total number of species quite constant. Currie told SCIENCE NEWS that other data suggest animal diversity is correlated with the amount of solar radiation, which, like evapotranspiration, is a measure of energy available for growth.
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Publication:Science News
Date:Oct 3, 1987
Words:179
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