07 MAR 2015 by ideonexus

 Taking Adaptation into Consideration of the Anthropocene

It took hundreds of millions of years to produce the life that now inhabits the earth—eons of time in which that developing and evolving and diversifying life reached a state of adjustment and balance with its surroundings. The environment, rigorously shaping and directing the life it supported, contained elements that were hostile as well as supporting. Certain rocks gave out dangerous radiation, even within the light of the sun, from which all life draws its energy, there were short-wave ...
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24 DEC 2013 by ideonexus

 Microbes Rule the World

Microbes make up 80 percent of all biomass, says microbiologist Carl Woese. In one-fifth of a teaspoon of seawater, there are a million bacteria (and 10 million viruses), Craig Venter says, adding, “If you don’t like bacteria, you’re on the wrong planet. This is the planet of the bacteria.” That means that most of the planet’s living metabolism is microbial. When James Lovelock was trying to figure out where the gases come from that make the Earth’s atmosphere such an artifact of ...
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Stewart Brand describes the state of our world, engineered by microbes and ourselves as the vehicles for their propagation in many cases.

17 MAY 2011 by ideonexus

 Seeing the Species for the Ecosystem

The authors comment that from this perspective, it could be stated that multiccellular beings are also ecosystems. That is, we are formed by different types of cells that cooperate and compete for resources; we are colonized by diverse types of bacteria (in the intestines, in the skin, etc.) whose activity is linked to other processes in our organism: we are invaded by viruses, which can be harmful or can take part in processes that regulate our DNA. "These beings are constantly being changed...
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It is helpful to think of species in the context of the ecosystem in which they live, as they are an part of it, indistinguishable from it in very important ways. Any single species' ecosystem includes all of the other species within it.