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体型较小的野生动物能适应城市化生活

kira86 于2018-07-06发布 l 已有人浏览
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科学家对700多种无脊椎动物研究后得出结论:除蝴蝶、飞蛾和蚱蜢外,其它生活在城里的野生生物的体型比生活在乡村的同类的体型小。
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City Life Favors Downsized Invertebrates

体型较小的无脊椎动物更适合城市生活

Most critters seem better able to survive big cities if they're smaller than usual. But a few others are better adapted to urban areas if they're larger. That's the result of a study of more than 700 types of invertebrates from across 10 different taxonomic groups living in a variety of habitats in northern Belgium.

大多数小生物似乎能更好地在大城市里生存下来。但如果城市面积更大的话,其他的一些生物也能更好的适应城市。这是对生活在比利时北部不同栖息地的10个不同生物群的700多种无脊椎动物的研究之后得出的结果。

European ecologists were interested in understanding how animals adapt to urbanization. So they set up a variety of traps in both urban and rural areas, and assessed the body size of more than 95,000 individual critters.

欧洲生态学家对了解动物如何适应城市化很感兴趣。因此,他们在城市和农村地区设了各种各样的陷阱,然后摸清了9.5万多个个体生物的体型。

They measured butterflies, beetles, weevils, ground spiders, web-building spiders, moths and grasshoppers. They also tested a handful of more obscure invertebrates, like a group of microscopic shrimp-like critters called ostracods, and a group of aquatic crustaceans known as water fleas.

他们测量了蝴蝶、甲虫、象鼻虫、地面蜘蛛、织网蜘蛛、飞蛾和蚱蜢的(体型)。他们还测量了少许无名的无脊椎动物的体型,比如叫做“介形虫”的一群像虾一样的小动物,还有一群被称为“水蚤”的水生甲壳类动物。

On average, urban communities contained smaller individuals than rural ones. It's not that cities are causing animals to evolve smaller bodies, at least not necessarily. What this study found is that animals that are already smaller seem better suited to city living. The researchers think that has to do with what's called the urban heat island effect. Animals expend more energy going about their daily lives in warmer areas, and cities tend to be warmer than more natural areas. Smaller body sizes can compensate for that heat effect.

平均而言,城市社区的生物比农村社区生物的体型要小。并不是城市让动物进化出更小的体型的,至少未必一定是(城市化造成的)。这项研究结果发现,体型较小的动物似乎更适合城市生活。研究人员认为,这与所谓的城市热岛效应有关。动物生活在更温暖的地方,每天会消耗更多的能量,而城市往往比大自然区域要更暖和。动物较小的体型可以弥补这种热量效应。

But some groups of city dwellers were actually bigger than were their countryside counterparts.

但有些生活在城市的小生物群实际比生活在乡村的同类的体型要大。

For three of our groups, for butterflies, moths, and for grasshoppers, we actually saw a completely reversed pattern…these three groups, out of the 10 groups that we tested, these were the only groups where large species are also the most mobile ones.Catholic University of Louvain ecologist Thomas Merckx.

“比如这三个生物群,蝴蝶、飞蛾和蚱蜢,我们在它们身上身上看到了一个完全相反的存在,在我们研究的10生物群中,仅这三类生物群既是大型物种,又是最具流动性的生物群。”鲁汶天主教大学的生态学家托马斯·麦克斯表示到。

These are animals that need wide spaces, something that's in short supply in cities, where roads and housing developments easily fragment natural habitats. Being bigger helps them move from one habitat patch to another more easily than their diminutive relatives. The results are in the journal Nature.

这些动物皆需要广阔的空间,而这在自然栖息地轻易被道路和房屋建设分割的城里是缺乏的。体型较大有助于让它们从一个栖息地迁移到另一个栖息地,实现起来也比起体型较小的同类更容易。该研究结果发表在《自然》杂志上。

As humans, we have become urban animals. So this is our new habitat. It wasn't the case a hundred years ago. Only a tiny minority of the human population was living in cities. But urbanization really is taking off. So now more than half of humans are already living in cities, and this is only going to increase.

“作为人类,我们已经变成了城市动物。所以城市就是我们新的栖息地,而100年前不是这样的,当时只有极少数人居住在城里。但城市化正在迅速发展,如今已有超过一半的人类生活在城里,城市人口只会继续增加。”

And humans are part of a wildlife community, even in cities. We need lots of other animals, including ones we might not always think about, like moths and spiders, to thrive in cities as well. Understanding how animals are adapting - or not - to urban areas today can help us build better, more wildlife-friendly cities in the future.

“人类是野生动物群的一部分,即使在城里也是如此。我们需要许多其它动物,包括那些我们可能不会经常想起的动物,比如飞蛾和蜘蛛在城里也能繁荣茁壮成长。了解动物如何适应或不适应如今的城市地区,能帮助我们在未来建设更好的、对野生动物也更友好的城市。”

 

(小e英语Jewel翻译,欢迎捉虫!)

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