Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Things sure are wild in the Smokies

It only takes a few minutes of walking around Asheville on a Saturday night to see that Western North Carolina as some, uh, interesting "species" that are rarely found in other parts of North Carolina. Now a 10-year study confirms that (sorta).

"A 10-year study has found more than 6,000 species of plant and animal life previously unidentified in Great Smoky Mountains National Park," says the Associated Press.

The All Taxa Biodiversity Project also discovered nearly 900 species "that are new to science."

The results of the study were discussed Monday during a Senate subcommittee field hearing in Asheville.

The project began in 1997 to inventory all species in the park that covers more than 800 square miles in the mountains of North Carolina and Tennessee. More than 1,000 scientists have studied species in the park, identifying a total of more than 16,000.

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