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Colonizing and Populating Habitats : Question 2
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Complete the following passage by filling in the missing words. Use the following list of words for your answers:
sporangium, rachis, prothallus, dry, frond, liverwort, warm, sorus, wind, pinnules

Ferns are a group of plants which evolved millions of years ago. They are large plants which can sometimes grow as large as a tree. The leaves of a fern are called ............... and each leaf is supported by a stem called a ..................... The fern's leaf is divided into smaller parts called ................... At certain times of the year the reproductive structures called ..................... can be found underneath the leaf. These structures are made of groups of small capsules which producespores.

The spore capsule, which is called a ....................................... will only open when the weather is ...................... and ............................ When the spores are released they are dispersed by the .......................... When the spores land on a piece of damp soil they will germinate after a few weeks and grow. The spores grow into a ...................... which looks like a small ...............................  After a few more weeks a fern leaf grows and a new fern plant establishes itself.

a) What is the name of the division of the plant kingdom that the ferns belong to?

  

b) Why is it important that the spores are released from the underside of the fern leaf?

   

c) Why are the spore capsules found mostly at the end of the fern leaf?

   

d) Why does a plant, such as a fern, disperse its spores so that they land far away?

  

e) What is the name of the division of the plant kingdom that the mosses and liverworts belong to?

   

f) When the spore of a moss or a liverwort germinates what does it develop into? How is this different from the fern?

   

 

 

g) Ferns, especially the group called horsetails, were responsible for the formation of coal millions of years ago. Explain, briefly, how coal is formed from plants such as ferns.