Figure 1. A
White-nosed Coatimundi (Nasua nasua)
on Barro Colorado Island, Panama, walking across a
horizontal liana stem. By connecting trees to other trees, lianas and
other vines create convenient pathways for animals to move through the
trees without having to descend to the ground. In
this way, vines can be considered important autogenic ecosystem engineers of forests.
See our special review: Vine Ecology. Photograph
by Francis E. Putz.