ecological diversity

The one thing that I learned from environmental sciences is that diversity gives stability to (eco)systems. If everyone thinks the same everyone will make the same thinking errors.
—  growingupdifferently

Alola is surrounded by the sea. It has a diverse ecology made up of Pokémon that have lived as natives of the Alola region for generations, along with Pokémon that have more recently arrived in Alola from other regions.

In Alola, humans and Pokémon coexist in a very close relationship, and a culture has developed that is different from other regions.


The Island Challenge

One aspect of the unique culture that has developed in the Alola region is the island challenge, an adventurous rite that involves traveling through each of the four islands. This event helps young people grow into fine Pokémon Trainers. As the main character of Pokémon Sun and Pokémon Moon, you yourself are destined to attempt this island challenge.

Island Challenge Trials

To complete the island challenge, young trial-goers must overcome the trials in store on each of the four islands. These trials are not limited to battling with Pokémon. They take a variety of forms, such as finding items or completing tests of knowledge. You will not be able to accomplish them with ordinary methods!

Totem Pokémon

At the end of each trial, a mighty Pokémon known as a Totem Pokémon will be waiting. A Totem Pokémon is much larger than others of its species, and its body is enveloped in a special aura.

Sophisticated Combos in SOS Battles

When Totem Pokémon battle, they summon ally Pokémon to join them. With the support of these allies, the Totem Pokémon become even more powerful. And it seems that Pokémon other than Totem Pokémon sometimes call on allies to aid them.

Grand Trials

The final trial on each island is called the grand trial. It is a Pokémon battle against the kahuna who leads that island. If a trial-goer succeeds in clearing this grand trial, he or she will be publicly recognized as having cleared all of the island’s trials and can move on to the next island.

Trial Captains

Each trial has a captain, whose role is to provide guidance to trial-goers. All of the captains are Trainers who undertook trials in their own island challenge a few years earlier.


Lana is a captain who is an expert with Water-type Pokémon. She is dedicated to her family and is a reliable older sister who watches over her younger sisters.


Captain Mallow is an expert with Grass-type Pokémon. She loves cooking, but it seems that sometimes her taste is a bit particular…


Specializing in Electric-type Pokémon, Captain Sophocles is good with mechanics and has invented various machines.


Kiawe is a captain whose expertise is in Fire-type Pokémon. Together with his Marowak, he studies the traditional dances that have been passed down in the Alola region.

Kahunas Lead Each Island

Each of Alola’s four islands has a leader, called the island kahuna, who governs the island. Kahunas are chosen by the Pokémon known as guardian deities, which are also found on each island.


Hala is the kahuna of Melemele Island, where you have just moved to, and is also your rival Hau’s grandfather. His skill is renowned in the Alola region. He gives you your first partner Pokémon and expects great things from you.


Antarctic biodiversity is much more extensive, ecologically diverse and biogeographically structured than previously thought. Understanding of how this diversity is distributed in marine and terrestrial systems, the mechanisms underlying its spatial variation, and the significance of the microbiota is growing rapidly. A new assessment by scientists, published in Nature this week, suggests Antarctica is a more diverse and biologically rich region than previously thought.

The Antarctic has very distinct biogeographic regions, each with different groups of species, is not simply one homogeneous area. There is much biodiversity on land, especially among the micro-organisms, such as bacteria; and the seafloor is very rich in larger unusual species. More than 8000 species of sea spiders and isopods are known from the marine environment. Micro-organismal systems can be really diverse, and highly specialised to arid, low nutrient conditions. There are good reasons to improve efforts to conserve biodiversity in the region


Happy World Wildlife Day!

We celebrate wildlife today and every day on our nation’s public lands. More than 3,000 species of wildlife call BLM-managed lands home - that’s a backyard of more than 245 million acres in 23 states, dispersed over ecologically-diverse and essential habitat.

Enjoy a few of our favorite wildlife photos from your public lands!

Insects evolved at least 420 million years ago, and over time became tremendously diverse and ecologically important. Amber, the fossilized resin from ancient trees, preserves whatever may have become trapped in it with microscopic clarity and vivid detail. Arthropods—including insects and arachnids—make up the majority of amber fossils, although plants and other invertebrates are also found. From this fossil record, scientists can trace evolutionary change over millions of years in exceptional detail. 

The Museum’s collection now holds tens of thousands of amber fossils from around the world, principally from the Early Cretaceous about 130 million years ago to the Miocene about 20 million years ago. The specimen pictured here is an extinct termite, Mastotermes electrodominicus, in Dominican amber, 1 1/3 inches (4.4 cm) long.

Learn more about the Museum’s amber collection.

why hasn’t pokemon elevated it’s basic ass and ditched the typed gym leader thing and instead move to making more elevated and complex cities and having the gym leader have a couple pokemon that reflect the atmosphere of that city. Like for example having a city located in the middle of a desert that a hidden way of getting to it that is a DESERT OASIS, with lush tropical plants and lots of fountains, AND THEN THE GYM LEADER WOULD HAVE WATER/GRASS/GROUND pokemon like a Ludicolo, Exeggutor, Milotic, and Donphan??? 

or a plateau city where the route leading to it was a giant spiral and the gym leader had flying/rock/bug and have like staraptor, scolipede, and rhyperior!!!


New Alola Artwork

Alola is surrounded by the sea. It has a diverse ecology made up of Pokémon that have lived as natives of the Alola region for generations, along with Pokémon that have more recently arrived in Alola from other regions.

In Alola, humans and Pokémon coexist in a very close relationship, and a culture has developed that is different from other regions.

New Study Unveils Exotic Flies Hiding in Urban LA

The common laboratory fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster, is arguably the most intensively studied and best known multicellular organism. Over 16,000 research papers were published in the last five years with the word “Drosophila” in the title. Many other species of Drosophila, though, still surprise scientists. In a study just published in the journal PLOS ONE, a group of researchers led by the American Museum of Natural History and the Natural History Museum (NHM) of Los Angeles County announce the discovery of two species of Drosophila flies never before seen in the United States living in the heart of Los Angeles.

“Given their great diversity and ecological significance, as pollinators in particular, arthropods are extremely important to city ecosystems. These two flies are remarkable examples of hidden biodiversity in one of the most populated urban centers in the world,” said David Grimaldi, a curator in the Museum’s Division of Invertebrate Zoology and lead author of the study. “As urban green areas become better recognized for improving quality of life, with parks and lots replanted with native species, and community gardens multiplying, more attention is being paid to species within cities.”

One of the newly noted species, Drosophila gentica (pictured above), is the second-most common fruit fly found in the Los Angeles BioSCAN traps. This species was described in 1962 based on specimens collected in El Salvador in 1954, the first and last time it’s been recorded anywhere until now.

The other species, Drosophila flavohirta (pictured above), has its origin in Australia, but has accompanied transplanted eucalyptus from Australia to South Africa and Madagascar. That might also explain its presence in California, given the popularity of eucalyptus trees and shrubs there. This is the first time the species has been seen in the Western Hemisphere.  The two fly species were collected by researchers with Biodiversity Science: City and Nature (BioSCAN), a project of the NHM.

“I was as surprised as anyone when such unusual flies were found in our samples,” said Brian Brown, NHM entomology curator and an author on the study. “But urban biodiversity is an almost unknown frontier.”

How could these species of one of the world’s most studied organisms have escaped notice for so long in a place like Los Angeles? It all depends on how you look. Previous surveys used fruit or other baits to catch Drosophila. The research team suggests that may be why these species were missed—both breed on flowers, not fruit.

The new study used a tent-like insect trap called a “Malaise trap,” made of a fine-screened fabric that intercepts and collects fly specimens. Thirty of these traps were placed in yards and outdoor areas around L.A., including in two gardens and at one school.

“The citizen scientists that host these traps share in the credit for this discovery,“ Brown said.

This story was originally published on the Museum blog


BLM Works With Partner to Study Rare Colorado Plant Species

BLM Colorado has been working with Betty Ford Alpine Gardens to research the rare Parachute penstemon, a plant that only grows on oil shale cliffs high above the Colorado River.

BLM Botanist Carol Dawson and the Alpine Gardens staff are studying how Parachute penstemon grows in order to understand how it may one day be planted in its native habitat as part of successful recovery efforts.

Research on Parachute penstemon is currently focused on gaining a better understanding of the plant by testing multiple germination techniques and seeing which one works best. In addition, BLM Colorado monitors the plant population annually and has determined that it is currently stable.

The threatened plant is native only to northwest Colorado’s Roan Plateau, an ecologically diverse area managed by the BLM and known for its recreational opportunities, remarkable landscape, and sensitive species.



More than 3,000 species of wildlife call BLM-managed lands home - that’s a backyard of more than 245 million acres in 23 states, dispersed over some of the Nation’s most ecologically-diverse and essential habitat.

Parents, teachers and everyone young at heart, you can download and share Valentine’s Day cards that feature some of the cutest wildlife on your public lands!  Pictured here, wildilfe at Piedras Blancas Light Station Outstanding Natural Area in California, BLM Photo.

Find a Valentine on My Public Lands Pinterest: