North Carolina is home to a number of impressive waterfalls that are worth a visit. Whether you're looking for an easy roadside stop or a challenging hike, there's something for everyone here.
A popular choice is Sliding Rock Falls in Pisgah National Forest. It has a 60-foot waterfall that also makes for a great swimming hole.
Insects can be an important part of a waterfall's ecosystem. But they can also be a source of danger if you are not careful.
In order to identify insects, it is necessary to know their anatomy. This includes the insect's body shape, size, and weight, as well as any special features that could help you find it.
Most insects have a pair of antennae, which are organs of smell and wind detection. Segmented antennae are often useful in identifying specific insects.
Metamorphosis - Many insects undergo complete metamorphosis. This means that the insect's appearance changes drastically.
This change takes place during an egg, nymph, or adult stage of the insect's life. Depending on the insect, it may undergo several molts before reaching the adult stage. During each molt, the insect sheds its old exoskeleton and replaces it with a new one. The new exoskeleton is more durable, allowing the insect to survive harsh conditions. During this period, the insect can change its feeding habits or its habitat.
Many North Carolina waterfalls are home to a variety of insects and other small invertebrates. These are often a delight to observe and learn about, and their presence is important to the health of waterfalls and surrounding areas.
Insects, or arthropods, are a diverse group of animals that can be classified into several classes. They have paired, jointed appendages; a chitinous exoskeleton; and segmented bodies.
There are a wide range of insect orders, including beetles (Coleoptera), caterpillars, katydids, grasshoppers, termites and crickets. These and other groups have chewing mouthparts, which can leave noticeable holes in leaves, fruit, or wood.
In addition, there are insects that feed on fungi. Some species are major plant pests; others can transmit disease. For example, the tomato spotted wilt virus (TSWV) can be transmitted by thrips.
Lizards are a diverse group of reptiles that range in size from chameleons and geckos to the 3-meter-long Komodo dragon. They can live in trees in rainforests or underground in deserts, and many eat insects and fruit.
There are 7,000 species of lizards worldwide. They can be found in every continent except Antarctica, and some are even found in the oceans.
Most lizards live on the ground, but others make their home in a tree or in a burrow. They have special toes and a prehensile tail to help them grasp thin branches or tunnel underground.
While some lizards are predators that prey on rodents, others are pests that can damage crops or be an environmental hazard to human health. Understanding how lizards move about and select habitat is important for managing them and protecting their habitats.
North Carolina is home to a variety of birds. Among them are Wood Thrush, Ovenbird, Black-throated Green, Black-throated Blue and Canada Warblers, Veery and Winter Wren.
The Blue Ridge Escarpment is a key habitat for these species. Gorges State Park, located along the escarpment, offers birding opportunities on trails that run through gorges and over waterfalls.
A new non-profit organization in Western North Carolina, Waterfall Keepers of NC, was formed to protect the beautiful waterfalls that line the gorges of the Blue Ridge Escarpment. Their mission is to educate the public about waterfalls and their importance as a natural resource.
When birds transit a waterfall, they change their wing beat and tail kinematics to maintain flight control and stability. They also alter their body posture to orient the body more vertically, thereby reducing impact exposure to falling water. This effect is similar to how hummingbirds react in heavy rain. But waterfall transit is more dynamically challenging than heavy rain.