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Re: Jurassic Termite Nests

Tim Williams wrote:

> (I missed the message before Dann's ... Was this thread prompted by an
> article on Jurassic termite nests?)

Aye, that it be.

> I thought termites ate any plant matter they could get their mandibles
> around.  Just ask your local pest exterminator.  :-)

The most numerous species (ie. most of the world's terrestrial biomass)
feed almost exclusively on grasses. I'm just wondering whether termites
were a lot less common before grasses took off. Or would ferns have been
a suitable food source? (they couldn't have been any less nutritious
than spinifex grass)

There's a similar situation with koalas. Before Australia dried out,
eucalypts were a minor component of the continent's flora. Now they are
the dominant tree species, and koalas are much more common than they
were several million years ago.


Dann Pigdon                   Australian Dinosaurs:
GIS / Archaeologist         http://www.geocities.com/dannsdinosaurs
Melbourne, Australia        http://www.alphalink.com.au/~dannj/