A follow-up to the post on Eriophyllum lanatum, these are photographs on the same island by Sheila’s friend and co-kayaker, Stephanie Meinke. Thank you, Stephanie!
As Sheila noted to me, these plants were “growing in rocky crevices and depressions wherever a little bit of soil could accumulate”, a similar phenomenon to what was mentioned in this entry on lichen diversity. Over time, most biologically barren surfaces will eventually be colonized by some living pioneers. These pioneers are often (partially) replaced by a succeeding wave of other organisms, which are in turn succeeded by others and so on – a process termed succession. As mentioned by Brent in the comments of the Eriophyllum entry, the nearby Winchelsea Islands sustain a Garry oak woodland community of plants, while these seemingly do not, i.e., the Winchelsea Islands are at a later seral stage (a later stage in the successional process).
Knowing that the Winchelsea Islands are larger in area than the Ada Islands and assuming 1) both groups of islands have the same geological origins and substrate (a fairly safe assumption); 2) the surfaces of both groups of islands have been exposed from the ocean for a similar length of time (a not so safe assumption); and 3) the Winchelsea Islands peak higher than the Ada Islands (could someone please confirm?), what do you think are the factors that have prevented the Ada Islands from going through the successional stages that would allow them to similarly host a Garry oak woodland forest?
A quick note from Olduvai George: Happy Birthday, Charles Darwin.
Photography resource link: While browsing in a bookstore a couple days ago, I was delighted to discover “Tree – A New Vision of the American Forest”, by writer-photographer James Balog. When someone takes an entire day to photograph a tree section by section, you can imagine the result is going to be something spectacular. It is. Site navigation is a bit tricky, but check out the section on Trees – two of my favourites are “Stagg” Giant Sequoia and Sycamore. As an aside, there is no Amazon link because I’ve decided such a program isn’t the right thing for UBC BG in most cases (and I will be removing most of the few existing links to Amazon from the site).