Tiny Termites Hold Back Entire Deserts from Spreading to Savannas and Grasslands

February 6, 2015 12:16 PM

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Termites may be able to hold back entire deserts. Scientists have taken a closer look at these insects and have found that their large dirt mounds are crucial when it comes to stopping the spread of deserts into semi-arid ecosystems and agricultural lands.

In the parched grasslands and savannas of Africa, South America and Asia, massive termite mounds rise up against the landscape. These mounds store nutrients and moisture. In addition, their internal tunnels allow water to better penetrate the soil. Because of this, vegetation often flourishes near t...

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