Tag Archive: arid

A double edged sunscreen

Photograph of the surface of an arid soil. On the right, the soil is partially covered with young biological crusts whereas on the left the crusts have reached maturity and taken a dark colour. (Credit: Ferran Garcia-Pichel)

 

Biological soil crusts are unique ecosystems in arid landscapes (whether cold or hot ones) or can be colonisers of habitats disturbed by climatic catastrophes or humans. Recently, a team of scientists examined the capacity of a type of biological crust to produce a kind of sunblock but it seems that this molecule comes with its own harmful costs… (more…)