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Gaia


Experience
Burning Gaia Incense, you can experience fragrances representative of the different biological regions of our planet.

Learn
It is important for all of us to learn about the great biological diversity of our planet and the biomes that support it.  We must also recognize the problems and challenges facing our natural world.

Appreciate
The quality of our lives and our future is directly related to the quality, health, and diversity of all life on earth.  Danger to one is danger to all. Value the inter-connectedness of life.

Do
Each of use can and must do something to improve our world.  Find a way that you can be part of the solution — and just do it!
Your customers explore four environmentally critical biomes through fragrance and informative packaging.  Ideal additions to the gift shop of any zoo, gardens, or science museum.

11-inch incense sticks are available for these four biomes:

Chaparral
Chaparral is used to describe a specific biome type found in coastal and inland mountain areas of southwestern North America, the Mediterranean basin, southern Africa, and central America. The biome is characterized as semi-arid, with hot and dry summers.  Its primary vegetation is broad-leafed evergreen shrubs, low bushes, and small trees.  Sagebrush, evergreen oaks, chamise, and manzanita are common chaparral plants.  Piñon, mesquite, cacti, and junipers are also found.  Grasses and perennial flowers are sparse and bloom only for brief weeks during the rainy season.  Year-round animal life includes lizards, snakes, rabbits, ground squirrels, and several well-adapted species of birds.  Insects are scarce.  Chaparral is an important biome because its vegetation protects vital watersheds from soil erosion and landslides, and many highly specialized plant and animal species are unique to chaparral.  Unfortunately, the protective role of chaparral is seriously threatened by over-grazing of domestic animals, the introduction of feral burros and camels, land, mineral, and road development, off-road vehicles, and poaching.

Rainforest
Rainforests are characterized by high annual rainfall, more than 80 inches.  Although usually imagined as low, hot, and steamy, they can be high, cold, and misty, as well, and fall into three major groups.  Equatorial rainforests are found in the lowlands of the Amazon, Sumatra, the Congo, and on several Pacific islands.  Subtropical rainforests are in Central America, the Phillipines, Vietnam, and parts of Brazil, Madagascar, and the Caribbean. Examples of non-tropical rainforests are found in Jamaica and western Washington state.  The rainforest biome is diverse, complex, and fragile.  Unique populations of plant, animal, and insect life exist in a highly stratified and interdependent relationship.  While rich in minerals and organic matter, the soils of rainforest are quickly leached and easily eroded by heavy rainfall.  The biome is extremely sensitive to change or loss of existing climatic conditions, habitats, or food sources. Changes on either a small or large scale have been shown to cause the decline and even extinction of unique life forms.  Today, rainforests face extreme problems and challenges from logging, cut-and-burn farming, land, mineral, and road development, poaching, chemical pollution, and global warming. 

Tundra
Treeless tundra covers nearly one tenth of the Earth's land surface.  It stretches from Greenland through Canada, across Alaska and Siberia, and back to Scandinavia.  Its land form is poorly drained and uneven.  A region of permafrost, cold temperatures and short growing season, the tundra supports a limited number of hardy plant and animal populations.  Tundra vegetation can be described as stunted.  Nearly all consists of perennials such as grasses, mosses, lichens, and small flowering plants.  Locoweed, white phlox, forget-me-nots, and purple lupine are common in mid-summer.  Also, arctic poppy, northern shooting-star, and mountain heather are found in tundra's shallow, rocky soils.  Animal life is well adapted, but not diverse.  Unlike plants, mammals scale large to deal with the cold.  Caribou (reindeer) and musk ox migrate in large herds in constant search of food, together with the more solitary moose and bears.  Smaller mammals include the Arctic fox, wolves, lemmings, weasels, and ground squirrels.  Birds, plentiful in warmer months, migrate away with the warmth.  Although remote and inhospitable, the tundra faces mounting stress from mineral, oil, and gas development, all of which destroys the very fragile plant life and disrupts animal migration, and now global warming.

Wetlands
Wetlands is used to describe the low-lying land areas that form a catchment for fresh or salt water.  This biome includes swamps, bogs, fens, and marshlands.  Wetlands are rich in diverse populations of plants, animals, insects, and fish.  They are vital habitats for many resident and migratory bird species, and serve as nursery spawning beds for fish, mollusks, reptiles, and more.  A wide variety of plant life thrives in healthy wetlands.  Salt-tolerant plants (halophytes) such as mangroves and eel grasses tend to dominate coastal wetlands.  Reeds, bulrushes, marsh foxtail, water mint, papyrus, and wild rice are a few of the common plants of fresh-water wetlands.  Heathy and diverse wetland plant populations are critical for bird and animal habitat, coastal erosion control, and aquatic spewing.  Wetlands face different threats depending on their location.  In moderate climates, many are still being destroyed by land development (dredging, filling, housing, roads), while others around the world are subject to overlooking and mineral development.  Wetlands are also subject to remote destruction from source water diversion and chemical runoff.  It is as yet unknown what the effects of global warming may be.