Sunday, August 07, 2005

Spiny forest vegetation at sunset in Madagascar

Spiny forest vegetation at sunset. Madagascar's spiny forests (or "spiny desert") are endemic to the arid southern tip of the island. These forests are dominated by plants of the Didiereaceae family, which is unique to Madagascar as are 95% of the species found in this ecosystem. Didiereaceae closely resemble some forms of cacti but are not related. Unlike catci, Didiereaceae species produce small deciduous leaves which are protected by meanacing thorns and spines that grow directly out of the plant's many branches. Madagascar's spiny forests are being rapidly destroyed for use as charcoal and building material.

More pictures of flora in Madagascar


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