Invertebrates and Microorganisms
When you take a close look, it becomes clear that the Southwestern U.S. is home to a great diversity of invertebrates and microorganisms. Though often tiny, these insects, snails, worms, algae, bacteria, fungi, etc. play key roles in the ecosystems they inhabit. For instance, they may pollinate plants, provide food for larger creatures or even prevent soil erosion. Invertebrates and microorganisms are also sensitive to environmental change and can serve as useful indicators of ecosystem health.