Veracruz, formally Veracruz de Ignacio de la Llave the Free and Sovereign State of Veracruz de Ignacio de la Llave, is one of the 31 states that, along with the Federal District, comprise the 32 federative entities of Mexico. It is divided in 212 municipalities and its capital city is Xalapa-Enríquez. Veracruz is bordered by the states of Tamaulipas to the north, San Luis Potosí and Hidalgo to the west, Puebla to the southwest and Chiapas to the south, Tabasco to the southeast. On its east, Veracruz has a significant share of the coastline of the Gulf of Mexico; the state is noted for its mixed indigenous populations. Its cuisine reflects the many cultural influences that have come through the state because of the importance of the port of Veracruz. In addition to the capital city, the state's largest cities include Veracruz, Coatzacoalcos, Córdoba, Minatitlán, Poza Rica, Boca Del Río and Orizaba; the full name of the state is Veracruz de Ignacio de la Llave. Veracruz was named after the city of Veracruz, called the Villa Rica de la Vera Cruz.
The suffix is in honor of Ignacio de la Llave y Segura Zevallos, the governor of Veracruz from 1861 to 1862. The state's seal was authorized by the state legislature in 1954, adapting the one used for the port of Veracruz and created by the Spanish in the early 16th century; the state is a crescent-shaped strip of land wedged between the Sierra Madre Oriental to the west and the Gulf of Mexico to the east. Its total area is 78,815 km2, accounting for about 3.7% of Mexico's total territory. It stretches about 650 km north to south, but its width varies from between 212 km to 36 km, with an average of about 100 km in width. Veracruz shares common borders with the states of Tamaulipas and Chiapas, Puebla and San Luis Potosí. Veracruz has 690 km of coastline with the Gulf of Mexico; the natural geography can be categoried into nine regions: The Sierra de Zongolica, the Tecolutla Region, the Huayacocotla Region, the Metlac River area, the Tuxtlas Region, the Central Region, the Laguna del Castillo Region, the Pueblo Viejo-Tamiahua Region and the Laguna de Alvarado Region.
The topography changes drastically, rising from the narrow coastal plains to the highlands of the eastern Sierra Madre. Elevation varies from sea level to the Pico de Orizaba, Mexico's highest peak at 5,636 m above sea level; the coast consists of low sandy strips interspersed with tidewater lagoons. Most of the long coastline is narrow and sandy with unstable dunes, small shifting lagoons and points; the mountains are of the Trans-Mexican Volcanic Belt. Mountain ranges include the Sierra de Topila, Sierra de Otontepec, Sierra de Huayacocotla, Sierra de Coxquihui, Sierra de Chiconquiaco, Sierra de Jalacingo, Sierra de Axocuapan, Sierra de Huatusco, Sierra de Zongolica and the Sierra de Los Tuxtla. Major peaks include Pico de Orizaba, Cofre de Perote, Cerro de Tecomates, Cerro del Vigía Alta and Cerro de 3 Tortas; the Pico de Orizaba is covered in snow year round. Major valleys include the Acultzingo, Córdoba, Maltrata and San Andrés. More than 40 rivers and tributaries provide water for irrigation and hydroelectric power.
All of the rivers and streams that cross the state begin in the Sierra Madre Oriental or in the Central Mesa, flowing east to the Gulf of Mexico. The important ones include: Actopan River, Acuatempan river, Río Blanco, Cazones River, Coatzacoalcos River, Río de La Antigua, Hueyapan River, Jamapa River, Nautla River, Pánuco River, Papaloapan River, Tecolutla River, Tonalá River, Tuxpan River and Xoloapa River; the largest in terms of water discharge are the Pánuco, Papaloapan and Uxpanapa. The Panuco, Tuxpan and Coatzacoalcos are navigable. Two of Mexico's most polluted rivers, the Coatzacoalcos and the Río Blanco are located in the state. Much of the pollution comes from industrial sources, but the discharge of sewerage and uncontrolled garbage disposal are major contributors; the state has few sewage treatment plants, with only 10% of sewage being treated before discharge. The state has ten major waterfalls and ten major coastal lagoons. There is only one significant lake, called Lake Catemaco.
Off the coast are the islands of Isla de Lobos, Isla de los Burros, Isla de Sacrificios, Isla de Salmendina, Isla del Idolo, Isladel Toro, Isla Frijoles, Isla Juan A Ramirez, Isla Pajaros and Isla Terrón and the ocean reefs called Blanquilla, Tangüillo, Gualleguilla, Anegada de Adento Anegada de Afuera and Cabezo. The large variation of altitude results in a large mixture of climates, from cold, snow-topped mountain peaks to warm wet tropical areas on the coast. 32% of the state is classified as hot and humid, 52% as hot and semi humid, 9% is warm and humid, 6% as temperate and humid and 1% is classified as cold. Hot and humid and hot and semi-humid climates dominate from sea level to about 1,000 m above sea level. Average annual temperature ranges from 22 to 26C with precipitation varying from 2,000 mm to just over 3,500 mm per year. Cooler and humid climates are found at elevations between 1,000 m and 1,600 m (5,249
Squamata is the largest order of reptiles, comprising lizards and amphisbaenians, which are collectively known as squamates or scaled reptiles. With over 10,000 species, it is the second-largest order of extant vertebrates, after the perciform fish, equal in number to the Saurischia. Members of the order are distinguished by their skins, which bear horny shields, they possess movable quadrate bones, making it possible to move the upper jaw relative to the neurocranium. This is visible in snakes, which are able to open their mouths wide to accommodate comparatively large prey. Squamata is the most variably sized order of reptiles, ranging from the 16 mm dwarf gecko to the 5.21 m green anaconda and the now-extinct mosasaurs, which reached lengths of over 14 m. Among other reptiles, squamates are most related to the tuatara, which superficially resembles lizards. Squamates are a monophyletic sister group to the rhynchocephalians, members of the order Rhynchocephalia; the only surviving member of Rhynchocephalia is the tuatara.
Squamata and Rhynchocephalia form the subclass Lepidosauria, the sister group to Archosauria, the clade that contains crocodiles and birds, their extinct relatives. Fossils of rhynchocephalians first appear in the Early Triassic, meaning that the lineage leading to squamates must have existed at the time. Scientists believe crown group squamates originated in the Early Jurassic based on the fossil record; the first fossils of geckos and snakes appear in the Middle Jurassic. Other groups like iguanians and varanoids appeared in the Cretaceous. Polyglyphanodontians, a distinct clade of lizards, mosasaurs, a group of predatory marine lizards that grew to enormous sizes appeared in the Cretaceous. Squamates suffered a mass extinction at the Cretaceous–Paleogene boundary, which wiped out polyglyphanodontians and many other distinct lineages; the relationships of squamates is debatable. Although many of the groups recognized on the basis of morphology are still accepted, our understanding of their relationships to each other has changed radically as a result of studying their genomes.
Iguanians were long thought to be the earliest crown group squamates based on morphological data, genetic data suggests that geckoes are the earliest crown group squamates. Iguanians are now united with anguimorphs in a clade called Toxicofera. Genetic data suggests that the various limbless groups. A study in 2018 found that Megachirella, an extinct genus of lepidosaur that lived about 240 million years ago during the Middle Triassic, was a stem-squamate, making it the oldest known squamate; the phylogenetic analysis was conducted by performing high-resolution microfocus X-ray computed tomography scans on the fossil specimen of Megachirella to gather detailed data about its anatomy. This data was compared with a phylogenetic dataset combining the morphological and molecular data of 129 extant and extinct reptilian taxa; the comparison revealed. The study found that geckos are the earliest crown group squamates not iguanians; the male members of the group Squamata have hemipenes, which are held inverted within their bodies, are everted for reproduction via erectile tissue like that in the human penis.
Only one is used at a time, some evidence indicates that males alternate use between copulations. The hemipenis has a variety of shapes, depending on the species, it bears spines or hooks, to anchor the male within the female. Some species have forked hemipenes. Due to being everted and inverted, hemipenes do not have a enclosed channel for the conduction of sperm, but rather a seminal groove that seals as the erectile tissue expands; this is the only reptile group in which both viviparous and ovoviviparous species are found, as well as the usual oviparous reptiles. Some species, such as the Komodo dragon, can reproduce asexually through parthenogenesis. There have been studies on how sexual selection manifests itself in lizards. Snakes use a variety of tactics in acquiring mates. Ritual combat between males for the females they want to mate with includes topping, a behavior exhibited by most viperids, in which one male will twist around the vertically elevated fore body of its opponent and forcing it downward.
It is common for neck biting to occur. Parthenogenesis is a natural form of reproduction in which the growth and development of embryos occur without fertilization. Agkistrodon contortrix and Agkistrodon piscivorus can reproduce by facultative parthenogenesis; that is, they are capable of switching from a sexual mode of reproduction to an asexual mode. The type of parthenogenesis that occurs is automixis with terminal fusion, a process in which two terminal products from the same meiosis fuse to form a diploid zygote; this process leads to genome wide homozygosity, expression of deleterious recessive alleles and to developmental abnormalities. Both captive-born and wild-born A. contortrix and A. piscivorus appear to be capable of this form of parthenogenesis. Reproduction in squamate reptiles is ordinarily sexual, with males having a ZZ pair of sex determining chromosomes, females a ZW pair. However, the Colombian Rainbow boa, Epicrates maurus, can reproduce by facultative parthenogenesis resulting in production of WW female pr
Animals are multicellular eukaryotic organisms that form the biological kingdom Animalia. With few exceptions, animals consume organic material, breathe oxygen, are able to move, can reproduce sexually, grow from a hollow sphere of cells, the blastula, during embryonic development. Over 1.5 million living animal species have been described—of which around 1 million are insects—but it has been estimated there are over 7 million animal species in total. Animals range in length from 8.5 millionths of a metre to 33.6 metres and have complex interactions with each other and their environments, forming intricate food webs. The category includes humans, but in colloquial use the term animal refers only to non-human animals; the study of non-human animals is known as zoology. Most living animal species are in the Bilateria, a clade whose members have a bilaterally symmetric body plan; the Bilateria include the protostomes—in which many groups of invertebrates are found, such as nematodes and molluscs—and the deuterostomes, containing the echinoderms and chordates.
Life forms interpreted. Many modern animal phyla became established in the fossil record as marine species during the Cambrian explosion which began around 542 million years ago. 6,331 groups of genes common to all living animals have been identified. Aristotle divided animals into those with those without. Carl Linnaeus created the first hierarchical biological classification for animals in 1758 with his Systema Naturae, which Jean-Baptiste Lamarck expanded into 14 phyla by 1809. In 1874, Ernst Haeckel divided the animal kingdom into the multicellular Metazoa and the Protozoa, single-celled organisms no longer considered animals. In modern times, the biological classification of animals relies on advanced techniques, such as molecular phylogenetics, which are effective at demonstrating the evolutionary relationships between animal taxa. Humans make use of many other animal species for food, including meat and eggs. Dogs have been used in hunting, while many aquatic animals are hunted for sport.
Non-human animals have appeared in art from the earliest times and are featured in mythology and religion. The word "animal" comes from the Latin animalis, having soul or living being; the biological definition includes all members of the kingdom Animalia. In colloquial usage, as a consequence of anthropocentrism, the term animal is sometimes used nonscientifically to refer only to non-human animals. Animals have several characteristics. Animals are eukaryotic and multicellular, unlike bacteria, which are prokaryotic, unlike protists, which are eukaryotic but unicellular. Unlike plants and algae, which produce their own nutrients animals are heterotrophic, feeding on organic material and digesting it internally. With few exceptions, animals breathe oxygen and respire aerobically. All animals are motile during at least part of their life cycle, but some animals, such as sponges, corals and barnacles become sessile; the blastula is a stage in embryonic development, unique to most animals, allowing cells to be differentiated into specialised tissues and organs.
All animals are composed of cells, surrounded by a characteristic extracellular matrix composed of collagen and elastic glycoproteins. During development, the animal extracellular matrix forms a flexible framework upon which cells can move about and be reorganised, making the formation of complex structures possible; this may be calcified, forming structures such as shells and spicules. In contrast, the cells of other multicellular organisms are held in place by cell walls, so develop by progressive growth. Animal cells uniquely possess the cell junctions called tight junctions, gap junctions, desmosomes. With few exceptions—in particular, the sponges and placozoans—animal bodies are differentiated into tissues; these include muscles, which enable locomotion, nerve tissues, which transmit signals and coordinate the body. There is an internal digestive chamber with either one opening or two openings. Nearly all animals make use of some form of sexual reproduction, they produce haploid gametes by meiosis.
These fuse to form zygotes, which develop via mitosis into a hollow sphere, called a blastula. In sponges, blastula larvae swim to a new location, attach to the seabed, develop into a new sponge. In most other groups, the blastula undergoes more complicated rearrangement, it first invaginates to form a gastrula with a digestive chamber and two separate germ layers, an external ectoderm and an internal endoderm. In most cases, a third germ layer, the mesoderm develops between them; these germ layers differentiate to form tissues and organs. Repeated instances of mating with a close relative during sexual reproduction leads to inbreeding depression within a population due to the increased prevalence of harmful recessive traits. Animals have evolved numerous mechanisms for avoiding close inbreeding. In some species, such as the splendid fairywren, females benefit by mating with multiple males, thus producing more offspring of higher genetic quality; some animals are capable of asexual reproduction, which results
George Albert Boulenger
George Albert Boulenger was a Belgian-British zoologist who described and gave scientific names to over 2,000 new animal species, chiefly fish and amphibians. Boulenger was an active botanist during the last 30 years of his life in the study of roses. Boulenger was born in Brussels, the only son of Gustave Boulenger, a Belgian public notary, Juliette Piérart de Valenciennes, he graduated in 1876 from the Free University of Brussels with a degree in natural sciences, worked for a while at the Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences, Brussels, as an assistant naturalist studying amphibians and fishes. He made frequent visits during this time to the Muséum national d'Histoire naturelle in Paris and the British Museum in London. In 1880, he was invited to work at the Natural History Museum a department of the British Museum, by Dr. Albert C. L. G. Günther and assigned to the task of cataloguing the amphibians in the collection, his position in the British Museum meant that he had to be a civil servant of the British Empire, so became a naturalized British subject.
In 1882, he became a first-class assistant in the Department of Zoology and remained in that position until his retirement in 1920. After his retirement from the British Museum, Boulenger studied roses and published 34 papers on botanical subjects and two volumes on the roses of Europe, he died in France. According to biographical accounts, he was methodical and had an amazing memory that enabled him to remember every specimen and scientific name he saw, he had extraordinary powers of writing made a second draft of anything he wrote, his manuscripts showed but few corrections before going to the publisher. Boulenger played the violin, could speak French and English apart from reading Spanish, Italian and a bit of Russian; as a zoologist, he had a working knowledge of both Greek and Latin. By 1921, Boulenger had published 875 papers totaling more than 5,000 pages, as well as 19 monographs on fishes and reptiles; the list of his publications and its index of species covers 77 printed pages. He described 1,096 species of fish, 556 species of amphibians, 872 species of reptiles.
He was famous for his monographs on amphibians and other reptiles, fishes for example his monographs on the fishes of Africa. He was a member of the American Society of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists and was elected its first honorary member in 1935. In 1937, Belgium conferred on him the Order of the highest honor awarded to a civilian, his son, Edward George Boulenger, was a zoologist. In 1897, King Leopold II of Belgium started to recruit naturalists to help create the Congo museum. Boulenger was named chairman for this commission, his main discovery in 1921 was a strange fish from the Congo. It lacked pigmentation, he recognized it as unrelated to any extant epigean species of Africa. He wrote a brief paper describing this new species of cave fish, the first described from Africa, he called it Caecobarbus geertsii, from caeco = blind, barbus = barb, geertsii, honoring a mysterious person, M. Geerts, who provided him with the specimen. Today, it is known as the African blind barb. 1912: Member of the Royal Academy of Science and Fine Arts of Belgium..
Boulenger described hundreds of reptile taxa. He described many amphibians and fishes; these 26 reptile species, recognised today, bear George Boulenger's name in the specific name, as boulengeri, boulengerii, or georgeboulengeri: Agama boulengeri Lataste, 1886 – Boulenger’s agama Anolis boulengerianus Thominot, 1887 – Tehuantepec anole Atractaspis boulengeri Mocquard, 1897 – Boulenger’s burrowing asp Atractus boulengerii Peracca, 1896 – Boulenger’s centipede snake Brachymeles boulengeri Taylor, 1922 – Boulenger’s short-legged skink Chabanaudia boulengeri – Gabon legless skink Chalcides boulengeri Anderson, 1892 – Boulenger’s sand skink Cnemaspis boulengerii Strauch, 1887 – Con Dao rock gecko Compsophis boulengeri – Boulenger’s forest snake Cylindrophis boulengeri Roux, 1911 – Timor pipesnake Dendragama boulengeri Doria, 1888 – Boulenger’s tree agama Elapsoidea boulengeri Boettger, 1895 – Boulenger’s gartersnake Hebius boulengeri – Tai-Yong keelback Enyalius boulengeri Etheridge, 1969 – Brazilian fathead anole Epacrophis boulengeri – Lamu blindsnake Gonyosoma boulengeri – rhinoceros ratsnake Chersobius boulengeri Duerden, 1906 – Karoo padloper Liolaemus boulengeri Koslowsky, 1898 – Boulenger’s tree lizard Morethia boulengeri – Boulenger's snake-eyed skink Nucras boulengeri Neumann, 1900 – Ugandan savanna lizard Pareas boulengeri – Boulenger’s slug snake Philodryas georgeboulengeri – southern sharp-nosed snake Rhampholeon boulengeri Steindachner, 1911 – Boulenger’s pygmy chameleon Scolecoseps boulengeri Loveridge, 1920 – Moçambique legless skink Trachyboa boulengeri Peracca, 1910 – northern eyelash boa Trachylepis boulengeri – Boulenger’s skinkIn the above list, a binomial authority in parentheses indicates that the species was described in a genus other than the genus to which it is assigned.
The water cobra genus Boulengerina was named for G. A. Boulenger, but it is now treated as a subgenus of Naja containing four species: Naja annulata, Naja christyi, Naja melanoleuca, Naja multifasciatus. Books written by George Albert Boulenger include: Catalogue of the Batrachia Salientia
The French are an ethnic group and nation who are identified with the country of France. This connection may be ethnic, historical, or cultural; the heritage of the French people is of Celtic and Germanic origin, descending from the ancient and medieval populations of Gauls, Ligures, Iberians, Franks and Norsemen. France has long been a patchwork of local customs and regional differences, while most French people still speak the French language as their mother tongue, languages like Norman, Catalan, Corsican, French Flemish, Lorraine Franconian and Breton remain spoken in their respective regions. Arabic is widely spoken, arguably the largest minority language in France as of the 21st century. Modern French society is a melting pot. From the middle of the 19th century, it experienced a high rate of inward migration consisting of Arab-Berbers, Sub-Saharan Africans and other peoples from Africa, the Middle East and East Asia, the government, defining France as an inclusive nation with universal values, advocated assimilation through which immigrants were expected to adhere to French values and cultural norms.
Nowadays, while the government has let newcomers retain their distinctive cultures since the mid-1980s and requires from them a mere integration, French citizens still equate their nationality with citizenship as does French law. In addition to mainland France, French people and people of French descent can be found internationally, in overseas departments and territories of France such as the French West Indies, in foreign countries with significant French-speaking population groups or not, such as Switzerland, the United States, Argentina, Brazil and Uruguay. To be French, according to the first article of the French Constitution, is to be a citizen of France, regardless of one's origin, race, or religion. According to its principles, France has devoted itself to the destiny of a proposition nation, a generic territory where people are bounded only by the French language and the assumed willingness to live together, as defined by Ernest Renan's "plébiscite de tous les jours" on the willingness to live together, in Renan's 1882 essay "Qu'est-ce qu'une nation?").
The debate concerning the integration of this view with the principles underlying the European Community remains open. A large number of foreigners have traditionally been permitted to live in France and succeeded in doing so. Indeed, the country has long valued its openness and the quality of services available. Application for French citizenship is interpreted as a renunciation of previous state allegiance unless a dual citizenship agreement exists between the two countries; the European treaties have formally permitted movement and European citizens enjoy formal rights to employment in the state sector. Seeing itself as an inclusive nation with universal values, France has always valued and advocated assimilation. However, the success of such assimilation has been called into question. There is increasing dissatisfaction with, within, growing ethno-cultural enclaves; the 2005 French riots in some troubled and impoverished suburbs were an example of such tensions. However they should not be interpreted as ethnic conflicts but as social conflicts born out of socioeconomic problems endangering proper integration.
French people are the descendants of Gauls and Romans, western European Celtic and Italic peoples, as well as Bretons, Aquitanians and Germanic people arriving at the beginning of the Frankish Empire such as the Franks, the Visigoths, the Suebi, the Saxons, the Allemanni and the Burgundians, Germanic groups such as the Vikings, who settled in Normandy and to a lesser extent in Brittany in the 9th century. The name "France" etymologically derives from the territory of the Franks; the Franks were a Germanic tribe. In the pre-Roman era, all of Gaul was inhabited by a variety of peoples who were known collectively as the Gaulish tribes, their ancestors were Celts who came from Central Europe in the 7th century BCE, non-Celtic peoples including the Ligures, Aquitanians in Aquitaine. Some in the northern and eastern areas, may have had Germanic admixture. Gaul was militarily conquered in 58–51 BCE by the Roman legions under the command of General Julius Caesar. Over the next six centuries, the two cultures intermingled, creating a hybridized Gallo-Roman culture.
In the late Roman era, in addition to colonists from elsewhere in the Empire and Gaulish natives, Gallia became home to some in-migrating populations of Germanic and Scythian origin, such as Alans. The Gaulish language is thought to have survived into the 6th century in France, despite considerable Romanizat
In agriculture, a field is an area of land, enclosed or otherwise, used for agricultural purposes such as cultivating crops or as a paddock or other enclosure for livestock. A field may be an area left to lie fallow or as arable land. Many farms have a field border composed of a strip of shrubs and vegetation, used to provide food and cover necessary for the survival of wildlife, it has been found that these borders may lead to an increased variety of animals and plants in the area, but in some cases a decreased yield of crops. In Australian and New Zealand English, any agricultural field may be called a paddock if for keeping sheep or cattle. If stock are grazed there, the space may be called a run, e.g. sheep run. The term paddock is used more in animal husbandry for a system in which grazing land is divided into small areas and the stock graze each paddock in turn for a short period. Paddock grazing systems may be designed for example, 6 or 11 paddocks used in rotation. A paddock is fenced by wire, defined by its natural boundaries, or is otherwise considered distinct.
A back paddock is a smaller field, situated away from the farm house. The equivalent concept in North America and the UK is a pasture. In Australia the word seems to have had its current meaning since at least 1807 and in New Zealand since at least 1842. However, the English meaning of "field" was used earlier in Australia and is still used. Meadow was in early use and has appeared for example, in 2004. Field remains in regular use in Australasia in expressions such as football field, Field Day and field trip. In a new style of ranching developed in North America, featured in the Peter Byck short film Carbon Soil Cowboys, a paddock is a small temporary subdivision of a pasture made with electric fencing, intensely grazed for a day and left to rest for 80 days or more
The Reptile Database is a scientific database that collects taxonomic information on all living reptile species. The database focuses on species and has entries for all recognized ~13,000 species and their subspecies, although there is a lag time of up to a few months before newly described species become available online; the database collects scientific and common names, literature references, distribution information, type information and other taxonomically relevant information. The database was founded in 1995 as EMBL Reptile Database when the founder, Peter Uetz, was a graduate student at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory in Heidelberg, Germany. Thure Etzold had developed the first web interface for the EMBL DNA sequence database, used as interface for the Reptile Database. In 2006 the database moved to The Institute of Genomic Research and operated as TIGR Reptile Database until TIGR was merged into the J Craig Venter Institute where Uetz was an Associate Professor until 2010.
Since 2010 the database has been maintained on servers in the Czech Republic under the supervision of Peter Uetz and Jirí Hošek, a Czech programmer. As of March 2018, the Reptile Database lists about 10,700 species in about 1180 genera, has about 45,000 literature references and about 11,000 photos; the database has grown since its inception with an average of ~120 new species described per year over the preceding decade. The Reptile Database has been a member of the Species 2000 project that has produced the Catalogue of Life, a meta-database of more than 150 species databases that catalog all living species on the planet; the CoL provides taxonomic information to the Encyclopedia of Life. The Reptile Database collaborates with the World Register of Marine Species, the citizen science project iNaturalist, has links to the IUCN Redlist database; the NCBI taxonomy database links out to the Reptile Database. The Reptile Database—Home Page Reptile Database Search—Search page at Reptarium