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SSS 2010-08-16

时间:2010-09-03 03:36来源:互联网 提供网友:yu6707   字体: [ ]
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    (单词翻译:双击或拖选)

This is Scentific American's 60-Second Science, I'm Steve Mirsky, got a minute?

At Point Reyes National Seashore in Marin County, California, a plant called Tidestrom’s lupine is holding on for dear life. Its survival has been threatened by the appearance of another plant, an invasive species called European beachgrass. So, does the beachgrass simply outcompete the lupines for land and light? Not at all, according to researchers at Washington University in St. Louis.

Tiny deer mice have a taste for the seeds of the lupines. These critters would ordinarily think twice about approaching the plants. Because exposed out on the sand, they’re easy pickings for birds interested in a rodent1 repast. But the beachgrass provides excellent cover. The mice use the grass to get close enough to pilfer2 seeds before any hungry birds pilfer the mice. The research appears in the August issue of the journal Ecology.

The information may be useful for a proposed dune3 restoration project. And the unexpected consequences of the invading species bring to mind this well-known comment by ecologist Aldo Leopold: “To keep every cog and wheel is the first precaution of intelligent tinkering.”

Thanks for the minute. For Scientific American's 60-Second Science, I'm Steve Mirsky. 
 


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1 rodent DsNyh     
n.啮齿动物;adj.啮齿目的
参考例句:
  • When there is a full moon,this nocturnal rodent is careful to stay in its burrow.月圆之夜,这种夜间活动的啮齿类动物会小心地呆在地洞里不出来。
  • This small rodent can scoop out a long,narrow tunnel in a very short time.这种小啮齿动物能在很短的时间里挖出一条又长又窄的地道来。
2 pilfer nAPyP     
v.盗,偷,窃
参考例句:
  • Staff were pilfering behind the bar.店员在柜台后有些小偷小摸的行为。
  • When food stores close,they go to work,pilfering food for resale on the black market.食品店关门后,他们就行动起来,偷食品拿到黑市上出售。
3 dune arHx6     
n.(由风吹积而成的)沙丘
参考例句:
  • The sand massed to form a dune.沙积集起来成了沙丘。
  • Cute Jim sat on the dune eating a prune in June.可爱的吉姆在六月天坐在沙丘上吃着话梅。
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