Grasshoppers are a group of insects belonging to the suborder Caelifera. They are among what is the most ancient living group of chewing herbivorous insects, dating back to the early Triassic around 250 million years ago. Grasshoppers are ground-dwelling insects with powerful hind legs which allow them to escape from threats by leaping vigorously; as hemimetabolous insects, they do not undergo complete metamorphosis. At high population densities and under certain environmental conditions, some grasshopper species can change color and behavior and form swarms. Under these circumstances, they are known as locusts. Grasshoppers are plant-eaters, with a few species at times becoming serious pests of cereals and pasture when they swarm in their millions as locusts and destroy crops over wide areas, they protect themselves from predators by camouflage. Other species such as the rainbow grasshopper have warning coloration. Grasshoppers are affected by parasites and various diseases, many predatory creatures feed on both nymphs and adults.
The eggs are the subject of attack by predators. Grasshoppers have had a long relationship with humans. Swarms of locusts can have devastating effects and cause famine, in smaller numbers, the insects can be serious pests, they are used as food in countries such as Indonesia. They feature in art and literature. Grasshoppers belong to the suborder Caelifera. Although, "grasshopper" is sometimes used as a common name for the suborder in general, some sources restrict it to the more "advanced" groups, they may be placed in the infraorder Acrididea and have been referred-to as "short-horned grasshoppers" in older texts to distinguish them from the also-obsolete term "long-horned grasshoppers" with their much longer antennae. The phylogeny of the Caelifera, based on mitochondrial ribosomal RNA of thirty-two taxa in six out of seven superfamilies, is shown as a cladogram; the Ensifera Caelifera and all the superfamilies of grasshoppers except Pamphagoidea appear to be monophyletic. In evolutionary terms, the split between the Caelifera and the Ensifera is no more recent than the Permo-Triassic boundary.
The group diversified during the Triassic and have remained important plant-eaters from that time to now. The first modern families such as the Eumastacidae and Tridactylidae appeared in the Cretaceous, though some insects that might belong to the last two of these groups are found in the early Jurassic. Morphological classification is difficult because many taxa have converged towards a common habitat type; this information is not available from fossil specimens, the palaentological taxonomy is founded principally on the venation of the hindwings. The Caelifera includes about 11,000 known species. Many undescribed species exist in tropical wet forests; the Caelifera have a predominantly tropical distribution with fewer species known from temperate zones, but most of the superfamilies have representatives worldwide. They are exclusively herbivorous and are the oldest living group of chewing herbivorous insects; the most diverse superfamily is the Acridoidea, with around 8,000 species. The two main families in this are the Acrididae with a worldwide distribution, the Romaleidae, found chiefly in the New World.
The Ommexechidae and Tristiridae are South American, the Lentulidae and Pamphagidae are African. The Pauliniids are nocturnal and can swim or skate on water, the Lentulids are wingless. Pneumoridae are native to Africa southern Africa, are distinguished by the inflated abdomens of the males. Grasshoppers have the typical insect body plan of head and abdomen; the head is held vertically at an angle with the mouth at the bottom. The head bears a large pair of compound eyes which give all-round vision, three simple eyes which can detect light and dark, a pair of thread-like antennae that are sensitive to touch and smell; the downward-directed mouthparts are modified for chewing and there are two sensory palps in front of the jaws. The thorax and abdomen are segmented and have a rigid cuticle made up of overlapping plates composed of chitin; the three fused thoracic segments bear two pairs of wings. The forewings, known as tegmina, are narrow and leathery while the hindwings are large and membranous, the veins providing strength.
The legs are terminated by claws for gripping. The hind leg is powerful; the posterior edge of the tibia bears a double row of spines and there are a pair of articulated spurs near its lower end. The interior of the thorax houses the muscles that control the legs; the abdomen has eleven segments, the first of, fused to the thorax and contains the tympanal organ and hearing system. Segments two to eight are joined by flexible membranes. Segments nine to eleven are reduced in
Elkhorn is an unincorporated community and census-designated place in Monterey County, United States. Elkhorn was a stop on the Southern Pacific Railroad 13 miles northwest of Prunedale, at an elevation of 10 feet; the population of Elkhorn was 1,565 at the 2010 census, down from 1,591 at the 2000 census. Elkhorn was named after the elk in the area; because Elkhorn is not incorporated, not all residents call the place. Some residents refer to Elkhorn as Castroville, Watsonville, or Salinas on mailed documents because Elkhorn shares ZIP codes with them. Other residents refer to Elkhorn as north Monterey County; the Elkhorn Slough National Estuarine Research Reserve, located in the area, promotes education about and preservation of the largest tidal salt marsh outside of San Francisco Bay, Elkhorn Slough. According to the United States Census Bureau, the CDP has a total area of 4.8 square miles, of which, 4.8 square miles of it is land and 0.02 square miles of it is water. Main county roads include: Castroville Boulevard, Dolan Road, Elkhorn Road, Meridian Road.
Castroville Boulevard provides access to Highway 156. Dolan Road provides access to Highway 1. Minor county roads include: Del Monte Farms, Bayview Road, Walker Valley Road, Long Valley Road, Amaral Road, Paradise Canyon Road; the 2010 United States Census reported that Elkhorn had a population of 1,565. The population density was 324.0 people per square mile. The racial makeup of Elkhorn was 1,122 White, 9 African American, 7 Native American, 63 Asian, 3 Pacific Islander, 286 from other races, 75 from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 588 persons; the Census reported that 1,565 people lived in households, 0 lived in non-institutionalized group quarters, 0 were institutionalized. There were 532 households, out of which 183 had children under the age of 18 living in them, 329 were opposite-sex married couples living together, 58 had a female householder with no husband present, 27 had a male householder with no wife present. There were 33 unmarried opposite-sex partnerships, 2 same-sex married couples or partnerships.
95 households were made up of individuals and 29 had someone living alone, 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.94. There were 414 families; the population was spread out with 364 people under the age of 18, 149 people aged 18 to 24, 349 people aged 25 to 44, 519 people aged 45 to 64, 184 people who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 41.5 years. For every 100 females, there were 97.4 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 97.5 males. There were 565 housing units at an average density of 117.0 per square mile, of which 380 were owner-occupied, 152 were occupied by renters. The homeowner vacancy rate was 1.3%. 1,098 people lived in owner-occupied housing units and 467 people lived in rental housing units. As of the census of 2000, there were 1,591 people, 523 households, 411 families residing in the CDP; the population density was 327.4 people per square mile. There were 542 housing units at an average density of 111.5 per square mile. Most residents live in detached single family homes with land and shared water wells and leach fields.
The racial makeup of the CDP was 72.16% White, 1.01% Black or African American, 0.63% Native American, 3.83% Asian, 0.13% Pacific Islander, 18.29% from other races, 3.96% from two or more races. 27.91% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. There were 523 households out of which 35.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 65.8% were married couples living together, 8.8% had a female householder with no husband present, 21.4% were non-families. 14.1% of all households were made up of individuals and 3.3% had someone living alone, 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.04 and the average family size was 3.34. In the CDP, the population was spread out with 25.7% under the age of 18, 7.6% from 18 to 24, 29.0% from 25 to 44, 28.5% from 45 to 64, 9.2% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females, there were 103.7 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 104.5 males. The median income for a household in the CDP was $70,370, the median income for a family was $71,296.
Males had a median income of $40,662 versus $36,274 for females. The per capita income for the CDP was $24,999. About 4.5% of families and 9.8% of the population were below the poverty line, including 5.7% of those under age 18 and 15.2% of those age 65 or over. Agricultural is a major part of Elkhorn's small economy. Strawberries and artichokes are key crops. Most Elkhorn residents work in the surrounding areas of Castroville, Moss Landing, the nearby larger towns of Watsonville and Monterey. Elkhorn shares zip codes with nearby Castroville and Prunedale. Elkhorn has limited business and retail services; the only retail service in Elkhorn is the Elkhorn Superette, located on the west side of Elkhorn Road, just north of Bayview Road. The nearest business and retail center is located about three miles away in Castroville. However, many Elkhorn residents travel about 20 minutes to the nearby cities for greater retail and service needs such as department stores, movie theaters, and
In biology, a species is the basic unit of classification and a taxonomic rank of an organism, as well as a unit of biodiversity. A species is defined as the largest group of organisms in which any two individuals of the appropriate sexes or mating types can produce fertile offspring by sexual reproduction. Other ways of defining species include their karyotype, DNA sequence, behaviour or ecological niche. In addition, paleontologists use the concept of the chronospecies since fossil reproduction cannot be examined. While these definitions may seem adequate, when looked at more they represent problematic species concepts. For example, the boundaries between related species become unclear with hybridisation, in a species complex of hundreds of similar microspecies, in a ring species. Among organisms that reproduce only asexually, the concept of a reproductive species breaks down, each clone is a microspecies. All species are given a two-part name, a "binomial"; the first part of a binomial is the genus.
The second part is called the specific epithet. For example, Boa constrictor is one of four species of the genus Boa. None of these is satisfactory definitions, but scientists and conservationists need a species definition which allows them to work, regardless of the theoretical difficulties. If species were fixed and distinct from one another, there would be no problem, but evolutionary processes cause species to change continually, to grade into one another. Species were seen from the time of Aristotle until the 18th century as fixed kinds that could be arranged in a hierarchy, the great chain of being. In the 19th century, biologists grasped. Charles Darwin's 1859 book The Origin of Species explained how species could arise by natural selection; that understanding was extended in the 20th century through genetics and population ecology. Genetic variability arises from mutations and recombination, while organisms themselves are mobile, leading to geographical isolation and genetic drift with varying selection pressures.
Genes can sometimes be exchanged between species by horizontal gene transfer. Viruses are a special case, driven by a balance of mutation and selection, can be treated as quasispecies. Biologists and taxonomists have made many attempts to define species, beginning from morphology and moving towards genetics. Early taxonomists such as Linnaeus had no option but to describe what they saw: this was formalised as the typological or morphological species concept. Ernst Mayr emphasised reproductive isolation, but this, like other species concepts, is hard or impossible to test. Biologists have tried to refine Mayr's definition with the recognition and cohesion concepts, among others. Many of the concepts are quite similar or overlap, so they are not easy to count: the biologist R. L. Mayden recorded about 24 concepts, the philosopher of science John Wilkins counted 26. Wilkins further grouped the species concepts into seven basic kinds of concepts: agamospecies for asexual organisms biospecies for reproductively isolated sexual organisms ecospecies based on ecological niches evolutionary species based on lineage genetic species based on gene pool morphospecies based on form or phenotype and taxonomic species, a species as determined by a taxonomist.
A typological species is a group of organisms in which individuals conform to certain fixed properties, so that pre-literate people recognise the same taxon as do modern taxonomists. The clusters of variations or phenotypes within specimens would differentiate the species; this method was used as a "classical" method of determining species, such as with Linnaeus early in evolutionary theory. However, different phenotypes are not different species. Species named in this manner are called morphospecies. In the 1970s, Robert R. Sokal, Theodore J. Crovello and Peter Sneath proposed a variation on this, a phenetic species, defined as a set of organisms with a similar phenotype to each other, but a different phenotype from other sets of organisms, it differs from the morphological species concept in including a numerical measure of distance or similarity to cluster entities based on multivariate comparisons of a reasonably large number of phenotypic traits. A mate-recognition species is a group of sexually reproducing organisms that recognize one another as potential mates.
Expanding on this to allow for post-mating isolation, a cohesion species is the most inclusive population of individuals having the potential for phenotypic cohesion through intrinsic cohesion mechanisms. A further development of the recognition concept is provided by the biosemiotic concept of species. In microbiology, genes can move even between distantly related bacteria extending to the whole bacterial domain; as a rule of thumb, microbiologists have assumed that kinds of Bacteria or Archaea with 16S ribosomal RNA gene sequences more similar than 97% to each other need to be checked by DNA-DNA hybridisation to decide if they belong to the same species or not. This concept was narrowed in 2006 to a similarity of 98.7%. DNA-DNA hybri
An endangered species is a species, categorized as likely to become extinct. Endangered, as categorized by the International Union for Conservation of Nature Red List, is the second most severe conservation status for wild populations in the IUCN's schema after Critically Endangered. In 2012, the IUCN Red List featured 3,079 animal and 2,655 plant species as endangered worldwide; the figures for 1998 were 1,102 and 1,197. Many nations have laws that protect conservation-reliant species: for example, forbidding hunting, restricting land development or creating preserves. Population numbers and species' conservation status can be found at the lists of organisms by population; the conservation status of a species indicates the likelihood. Many factors are considered; the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species is the best-known worldwide conservation status listing and ranking system. Over 50% of the world's species are estimated to be at risk of extinction. Internationally, 199 countries have signed an accord to create Biodiversity Action Plans that will protect endangered and other threatened species.
In the United States, such plans are called Species Recovery Plans. Though labelled a list, the IUCN Red List is a system of assessing the global conservation status of species that includes "Data Deficient" species – species for which more data and assessment is required before their status may be determined – as well species comprehensively assessed by the IUCN's species assessment process; those species of "Near Threatened" and "Least Concern" status have been assessed and found to have robust and healthy populations, though these may be in decline. Unlike their more general use elsewhere, the List uses the terms "endangered species" and "threatened species" with particular meanings: "Endangered" species lie between "Vulnerable" and "Critically Endangered" species, while "Threatened" species are those species determined to be Vulnerable, Endangered or Critically Endangered; the IUCN categories, with examples of animals classified by them, include: Extinct no remaining individuals of the species Extinct in the wild Captive individuals survive, but there is no free-living, natural population.
Critically endangered Faces an high risk of extinction in the immediate future. Endangered Faces a high risk of extinction in the near future. Vulnerable Faces a high risk of endangerment in the medium term. Near-threatened May be considered threatened in the near future. Least concern No immediate threat to species' survival. A) Reduction in population size based on any of the following: An observed, inferred or suspected population size reduction of ≥ 70% over the last 10 years or three generations, whichever is the longer, where the causes of the reduction are reversible AND understood AND ceased, based on any of the following: direct observation an index of abundance appropriate for the taxon a decline in area of occupancy, extent of occurrence or quality of habitat actual or potential levels of exploitation the effects of introduced taxa, pathogens, competitors or parasites. An observed, inferred or suspected population size reduction of ≥ 50% over the last 10 years or three generations, whichever is the longer, where the reduction or its causes may not have ceased OR may not be understood OR may not be reversible, based on any of to under A1.
A population size reduction of ≥ 50%, projected or suspected to be met within the next 10 years or three generations, whichever is the longer, based on any of to under A1. An observed, inferred, projected or suspected population size reduction of ≥ 50% over any 10 year or three generation period, whichever is longer, where the time period must include both the past and the future, where the reduction or its causes may not have ceased OR may not be understood OR may not be reversible, based on any of to under A1. B) Geographic range in the form of either B1 OR B2 OR both: Extent of occurrence estimated to be less than 5,000 km², estimates indicating at least two of a-c: Severely fragmented or known to exist at no more than five locations. Continuing decline, observed or projected, in any of the following: extent of occurrence area of occupancy area, extent or quality of habitat number of locations or subpopulations number of mature individuals Extreme fluctuations in any of the following: extent of occurrence area of occupancy number of locations or subpopulations number of mature individuals Area of occupancy estimated to be less than 500 km², estimates indicating at least two of a-c: Severely fragmented or known to exist at no more than five locations.
Continuing decline, observed or projected, in any of the following: extent of occurrence area of occupancy area, extent or quality of habitat number of locations or subpopulations number of mature individuals Extreme fluctuations in any of the following: extent of occurrence area of occupancy number of locations or subpopulations number of mature individualsC) Population estimated to number fewer than 2,500 mature individuals and either: An estimated continuing decline of at least 20% within five years or two generations, whichever is longer, OR A continuing decline, projected
Buttonwillow is an unincorporated community in the San Joaquin Valley, in Kern County, California. Buttonwillow is 26 miles west of Bakersfield, at an elevation of 269 feet ); the population was 1,508 at the 2010 census, up from 1,266 at the 2000 census. The center of population of California is located in Buttonwillow; the town was called Buena Vista when it was founded in 1895, but the name became Buttonwillow. Buttonwillow was named for the buttonbush. A lone buttonbush served as a landmark on an old trans-valley trail and was used by ancient Yokut Indian as a meeting place becoming the site of settlers' stock rodeos; the Miller-Lux holdings company established a headquarters and store near the tree. This tree is listed as California Historical Landmark No. 492. This landmark is now known as the Buttonwillow Tree; the first United States Post Office at Buttonwillow was established in 1895. Buttonwillow is a major stop for motorists traveling on Interstate 5, it includes gas stations including, a McDonald's, a Carl's Jr. a drive-thru Starbucks, Willow Ranch BBQ restaurant, an Indian restaurant, Subway, a Mexican-Salvadoran restaurant, TravelCenters of America, Denny's, Castro Tire & Truckwash.
These are all at the exit of State Route 58. There is a large electrical substation next to the town, a part of a major north–south transmission corridor, it marks the northern end of Path 26 across the Transverse Ranges and the southern end of the Path 15 power lines. Buttonwillow is the motel hub for members of the Sports Car Club of America's Cal Club region when they hold events at Cal Club-owned Buttonwillow Raceway Park – a Super 8, a Motel 6 and the Homeland Inn are the motels of note there. Buttonwillow's main industry is cotton farming. According to the United States Census Bureau, Buttonwillow has an area of 6.9 square miles, all of it land. Buttonwillow is locally known as the cotton country, due to the abundant planting of cotton in the vicinity. Beginning about four miles south of town along Elk Hills Road, between Buttonwillow and Taft, is the enormous Elk Hills Oil Field the Naval Petroleum Reserve No. 1, which figured prominently in the Teapot Dome scandal that tarnished the administration of President Warren G. Harding.
Occidental Petroleum bought the reserve from the U. S. Department of Energy in 1998, is the current primary operator of the oil field. 6.927 square miles The 2010 United States Census reported that Buttonwillow had a population of 1,508. The population density was 217.7 people per square mile. The racial makeup of Buttonwillow was 534 White, 36 African American, 11 Native American, 10 Asian, 0 Pacific Islander, 890 from other races, 27 from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1,183 persons; the Census reported that 1,508 people lived in households, 0 lived in non-institutionalized group quarters, 0 were institutionalized. There were 379 households, out of which 225 had children under the age of 18 living in them, 217 were opposite-sex married couples living together, 64 had a female householder with no husband present, 39 had a male householder with no wife present. There were 36 unmarried opposite-sex partnerships, 1 same-sex married couples or partnerships. 46 households were made up of individuals and 29 had someone living alone, 65 years of age or older.
The average household size was 3.98. There were 320 families; the population was spread out with 561 people under the age of 18, 162 people aged 18 to 24, 428 people aged 25 to 44, 265 people aged 45 to 64, 92 people who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 26.5 years. For every 100 females, there were 110.0 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 111.9 males. There were 406 housing units at an average density of 58.6 per square mile, of which 184 were owner-occupied, 195 were occupied by renters. The homeowner vacancy rate was 1.6%. 699 people lived in owner-occupied housing units and 809 people lived in rental housing units. As of the census of 2000, there were 1,266 people, 328 households, 270 families residing in the CDP; the population density was 181.7 people per square mile. There were 364 housing units at an average density of 52.2 per square mile. The racial makeup of the CDP was 34.28% White, 3.79% Black or African American, 1.66% Native American, 0.08% Asian, 55.06% from other races, 5.13% from two or more races.
68.40% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. There were 328 households out of which 56.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 61.6% were married couples living together, 14.3% had a female householder with no husband present, 17.4% were non-families. 15.2% of all households were made up of individuals and 7.9% had someone living alone, 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.81 and the average family size was 4.25. In the CDP, the population was spread out with 38.0% under the age of 18, 12.6% from 18 to 24, 27.6% from 25 to 44, 13.4% from 45 to 64, 8.3% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 24 years. For every 100 females, there were 107.2 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 106.6 males. The median income for a household in the CDP was $28,370, the median income for a family was $29,716. Males had a median income of $19,514 versus $16,974 for
Santa Barbara County, California
Santa Barbara County, California the County of Santa Barbara, is a county located in the southern region of the U. S. state of California. As of the 2010 census, the population was 423,895; the county seat is Santa Barbara, the largest city is Santa Maria. Santa Barbara County comprises CA Metropolitan Statistical Area. Most of the county is part of the California Central Coast. Mainstays of the county's economy include engineering, resource extraction, winemaking and education; the software development and tourism industries are important employers in the southern part of the county. Southern Santa Barbara County is sometimes considered the northern cultural boundary of Southern California; the Santa Barbara County area, including the Northern Channel Islands, was first settled by Native Americans at least 13,000 years ago. Evidence for a Paleoindian presence has been found in the form of a fluted Clovis-like point found in the 1980s along the western Santa Barbara Coast, as well as the remains of Arlington Springs Man found on Santa Rosa Island in the 1960s.
For thousands of years, the area was home to the Chumash tribe of Native Americans, complex hunter-gatherers who lived along the coast and in interior valleys leaving rock art in many locations, including Painted Cave. Europeans first contacted the Chumash in AD 1542, when three Spanish ships under the command of Juan Rodríguez Cabrillo explored the area; the Santa Barbara Channel received its name from Spanish explorer Sebastián Vizcaíno when he sailed along the California coast in 1602. Spanish ships associated with the Manila Galleon trade made emergency stops along the coast during the next 167 years, but no permanent settlements were established; the first land expedition to explore California, led by Gaspar de Portolà explored the coastal area in 1769, on its way to Monterey Bay. The party traveled the same route on the return to San Diego in January 1770; that same year, a second expedition to Monterey again passed through the area. The DeAnza expeditions of 1774-76 followed Portola's trail.
The Presidio of Santa Barbara was established in 1782, followed by Mission Santa Barbara in 1786 – both in what is now the city of Santa Barbara. The presidio and mission kept Vizcaino's denomination, as did the city and county – a common practice which has preserved the names of many of the 21 California Missions. European contacts had devastating effects on the Chumash people, including a series of disease epidemics that drastically reduced Chumash population; the Chumash survived and thousands of Chumash descendants still live in the Santa Barbara area or surrounding counties. A tribal homeland was established in the Santa Ynez Reservation. Following the Mexican secularization of the missions in the 1830s, the mission pasture lands were broken up into large ranchos and granted to prominent local citizens who lived in the area. 604 of these land grants were confirmed by the state of California, with 36 in Santa Barbara County. Santa Barbara County was one of the 27 original counties of California, formed in 1850 at the time of statehood.
The county's territory was divided to create Ventura County in 1873. According to the U. S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 3,789 square miles, of which 2,735 square miles is land and 1,054 square miles is water. Four of the Channel Islands – San Miguel Island, Santa Cruz Island, Santa Rosa Island and Santa Barbara Island – are in Santa Barbara County, they form the largest part of the Channel Islands National Park. Santa Barbara County has a mountainous interior abutting several coastal plains on the west and south coasts of the county; the largest concentration of population is on the southern coastal plain, referred to as the "south coast" – meaning the part of the county south of the Santa Ynez Mountains. This region includes the cities of Santa Barbara and Carpinteria, as well as the unincorporated areas of Hope Ranch, Mission Canyon and Isla Vista, along with stretches of unincorporated area such as Noleta/Nanta Barbara. North of the Santa Ynez range in the Santa Ynez Valley are the towns of Santa Ynez, Buellton, Lompoc.
North of the Santa Ynez Valley are the cities of Santa Maria and Guadalupe, the unincorporated towns of Orcutt, Los Alamos, Casmalia and Sisquoc. In the extreme northeastern portion of the county are the small cities of New Cuyama and Ventucopa; as of January 1, 2006, Santa Maria has become the largest city in Santa Barbara County. The principal mountain ranges of the county are the Santa Ynez Mountains in the south, the San Rafael Mountains and Sierra Madre Mountains in the interior and northeast. Most of the mountainous area is within the Los Padres National Forest, includes two wilderness areas: the San Rafael Wilderness and the Dick Smith Wilderness; the highest elevation in the county is 6820 feet at Big Pine Mountain in the San Rafaels. North of the mountains is the arid and sparsely populated Cuyama Valley, portions of which are in San Luis Obispo and Ventura Counties. Oil production and agriculture dominate the land use in the owned parts of the Cuyama Valley.
Predation is a biological interaction where one organism, the predator and eats another organism, its prey. It is one of a family of common feeding behaviours that includes parasitism and micropredation and parasitoidism, it is distinct from scavenging on dead prey, though many predators scavenge. Predators may search for prey or sit and wait for it; when prey is detected, the predator assesses. This may involve pursuit predation, sometimes after stalking the prey. If the attack is successful, the predator kills the prey, removes any inedible parts like the shell or spines, eats it. Predators are adapted and highly specialized for hunting, with acute senses such as vision, hearing, or smell. Many predatory animals, both vertebrate and invertebrate, have sharp claws or jaws to grip and cut up their prey. Other adaptations include aggressive mimicry that improve hunting efficiency. Predation has a powerful selective effect on prey, the prey develop antipredator adaptations such as warning coloration, alarm calls and other signals, mimicry of well-defended species, defensive spines and chemicals.
Sometimes predator and prey find themselves in an evolutionary arms race, a cycle of adaptations and counter-adaptations. Predation has been a major driver of evolution since at least the Cambrian period. At the most basic level, predators eat other organisms. However, the concept of predation is broad, defined differently in different contexts, includes a wide variety of feeding methods. A parasitoid, such as an ichneumon wasp, lays its eggs on its host. Zoologists call this a form of parasitism, though conventionally parasites are thought not to kill their hosts. A predator can be defined to differ from a parasitoid in two ways: it kills its prey immediately. There are other borderline cases. Micropredators are small animals that, like predators, feed on other organisms. However, since they do not kill their hosts, they are now thought of as parasites. Animals that graze on phytoplankton or mats of microbes are predators, as they consume and kill their food organisms. However, when animals eat seeds or eggs, they are consuming entire living organisms, which by definition makes them predators, albeit unconventional ones: for instance, a mouse that eats grass seeds has no adaptations for tracking and subduing prey and its teeth are not adapted to slicing through flesh.
Scavengers, organisms that only eat organisms found dead, are not predators, but many predators such as the jackal and the hyena scavenge when the opportunity arises. Among invertebrates, social wasps are both scavengers of other insects. While examples of predators among mammals and birds are well known, predators can be found in a broad range of taxa, they are common among insects, including mantids, dragonflies and scorpionflies. In some species such as the alderfly, only the larvae are predatory. Spiders are predatory, as well as other terrestrial invertebrates such as scorpions. In marine environments, most cnidarians, ctenophora and flatworms are predatory. Among crustaceans, crabs and barnacles are predators, in turn crustaceans are preyed on by nearly all cephalopods. Seed predation is restricted to mammals and insects and is found in all terrestrial ecosystems. Egg predation includes both specialist egg predators such as some colubrid snakes and generalists such as foxes and badgers that opportunistically take eggs when they find them.
Some plants, like the pitcher plant, the Venus fly trap and the sundew, are carnivorous and consume insects. Some carnivorous fungi catch nematodes using either active traps in the form of constricting rings, or passive traps with adhesive structures. Many species of protozoa and bacteria prey on other microorganisms. Among freshwater and marine zooplankton, whether single-celled or multi-cellular, predatory grazing on phytoplankton and smaller zooplankton is common, found in many species of nanoflagellates, ciliates, rotifers, a diverse range of meroplankton animal larvae, two groups of crustaceans, namely copepods and cladocerans. To feed, a predator must search for and kill its prey; these actions form a foraging cycle. The predator must decide. If it chooses pursuit, its physical capabilities determine the mode of pursuit. Having captured the prey, it may need to expend energy handling it (e.g. killing it, removing any shell or