High temperatures have stripped the Alps of snow. In its place, an unlikely plant emerged.

Twitter/Romain Boisset

The Catos have taken over the Swiss Alps

The species should only be found in hot and arid zones, such as the deserts of North America.

You Swiss Alps it was for years an idyllic setting for its lovers snow and his winter sports. However, climate change and rising temperatures have led to a profound change in the landscape of the Valais region. Now, instead of snow, we are used to seeing prickly peara genus of the family cactus. In fact, the genre has almost covered one third of the available areathreatening the native plants that grew there and raising ecological concerns.

This item should only be found in warm and arid zoneslike just punishment North Americans. Therefore, one would expect the Alps to be a inhospitable. According to biologists, these species manage to survive in areas where maximum temperatures are reached 38 degrees Celsius and the minimum at -15.

These cacti were originally brought to Europe by traders and explorers a long time ago. more than 200 years. However, the plants experienced many difficulties to thrive in this climate. for centuries. With changes in temperature, such as the landscape has changed.

According to a study published by Nature Climate Change, the Swiss Alps have retreated by 5.6% per decade over the past 50 years. At the same time, the snow that falls also tends to last minus 36 days before disappearing.

These changes have natural consequences for her economy of the region, largely dependent on winter tourism. Some ski resorts, for example, struggled to stay open, while others chose one transformation for indoor constructions or with artificial snow.

Local authorities have already expressed their opinion dislike before the permanence of the species, but it seems indifferent to the bad reception. According to the website All That Interesting, conservationists fear that the consequences will not be limited to this area because, as is typical of invasive species, they tend to spread with relative ease.

“When you have these cats, nothing else grows. Each element covers the ground and restricts the growth of other plants,” he described. Jan Triponez, a biologist working for the Valais Nature Conservancy. also Peter Oliver Baumgartnera geologist at the University of Lausanne explained that there are nine species of cacti in Switzerland, four of which are particularly invasive is resistant at low temperatures.

It is precisely these four species that are of concern to local authorities, not only because they respawn in the exact same place from which they were taken, but also because eliminate them in the long run seems to be a mission impossibility.

ZAP //

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