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A Rain Forest Begins With Rain, Right? Is This A Trick Question?

Thursday, January 09, 2014 - 07:08 AM

MinuteEarth/Youtube

Think of a rain forest — rich with trees, covered by clouds, wet all the time.

Then ask yourself, how did this rain forest get started?

I ask, because the answer is so going to surprise you. It's not what you think.

Until I saw the video you're about to see, I just figured that a rain forest starts when a place gets rainier. (Why it gets rainier, I don't know. I don't think about that.) And then — once it starts raining all the time — tropical, rain-loving trees start to grow. They grow everywhere, and make a forest.

So I figure that's the order: rain first, forest second. It's like the name. We don't call these places forest-rains; our name for them describes how they came to be.

Or so I thought.

Now watch this — from science explainer and animator Henry Reich:

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Comments [1]

Allison

Dear Jad and Robert,

Why are there highway snakes (the long squiggly lines on the sides of the walls on a highway)?

sincerely,
Allie P.

(P.S. I don't think they're actually called highway snakes)

Jan. 20 2014 12:02 PM

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