A Natural History of Western Trees by Peattie, D.C. and Landacre, P.

By Peattie, D.C. and Landacre, P.

One in every of real classics of yankee nature writing now in paperback; the opposite is A ordinary heritage of bushes of jap and critical North the United States.

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Most organisms, of course, are not pests. , the organisms that we eat and enjoy, or the organisms that destroy unwanted organisms: the natural enemies of our pests. But the overwhelming majority of organisms in the biosphere are never classified as pest or beneficial. We usually don't concern ourselves with these plants, animals, or microorganisms because we are not aware of their playing a significant role in our lives. We must change that attitude, however, as all are important components of the food chains that maintain the natural balance of the biosphere.

PopUlation dynamics of mite populations in an apple orchard with two different kinds of pest control systems. Early sprays in the standard spray program (top) kill off the food source (the rust mite) for the predator mite, and consequently the predator mite is not around to control the McDaniel mite, a severe pest, later in the season. In the integrated pest management program (bottom), the noneconomical rust mite is maintained at high levels to support predator populations. In this program the McDaniel mite has not become a pest (data from Hoyt, 1969).

In fact, we may describe communities within communities. For example, the organisms in, on, and alongside a small pond within a forest may be seen as a community with a functioning trophic structure of primary pro- HUMAN-MANAGED ENVIRONMENTS AS BIOSPHERE SYSTEMS 23 ducers, consumers, and reducers of its own; in addition, the pond organisms may be included as part of the larger surrounding forest community unit. In other words, communities are merely human constructs through which we may view and better understand the biological and ecological interrelationships between organisms.

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