After the Oxbow

For reasons complex, historic, and muddy, the lower Mississippi River ecosystem now depends greatly on the slow-moving, seasonal backwaters that thread through the thin, riverside forests that persist between engineered levees. Those backwaters, a growing chorus of scientists say, are beginning to disappear.

The Slow Death of Ecology’s Birthplace

Brazil’s cerrado has many faces: arid tablelands, open grasslands, palm-dotted marshes — though most people see it only as a dry, unruly expanse of low, twisted shrubs. As a result, this unique ecosystem where a pioneering botanist once traced the evolution of plants is in danger of being lost forever.