The forest floor: Vegetation
The forest floor is not rich in vegetation. In some areas the shade is so dense that there is nothing but a deep layer of decomposing leaves with the occasional fungi. Where the canopy is thinner, there may be small bushes, a few herbs on the ground and some spindly saplings. In Africa and Asia such plants provide food for small antelope e.g. duiker (Cephalophus species). These animals are extremely shy and difficult to observe as they forage for leaf material in the dappled light. These animals are very similar to the primitive ruminants that were among the first leaf eating specialists that evolved some fifty million years ago.