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Monday, March 2, 2009

(Biological) Treasure Island

I found these four signs at the Taipei Zoo's Taiwan Animal Area. They show in nice detail the wondrous biodiversity and immense endemism this little island has to offer.

The foremost reason for such bounty is the Central Mountain Range which, topping out at almost 4000 meters (13000+ ft), provides La Ilha Formosa with a large variety of biotopes at various elevations, from tropical beaches to alpine meadows. Being an island, endemism just thrives in such surroundings.

Out of every 120 known animal, plant, fungus etc. species in Taiwan, one is endemic: 12333 out of 1450832.

One in forty known animal, plant etc. etc. species on the planet lives in Taiwan - 36880 out of 1450832.

For a better understanding of the next two signs, which elaborate on the numbers for various plant and animal groups, check out this chart.

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