Ecosystem-The Living World (Biomes)



Biome characteristics

  • Tropical forests are found near the equator in Central and South America, parts of Africa and Asia. They are hot and humid and contain a huge variety of plants and animals – around half of all the world’s species. The trees are mostly hardwood. The climate is called equatorial.
  • Savannah or tropical grasslands are hot and dry, dominated by grass, scruband occasional trees. They have two distinct seasons – a dry season when much of the vegetation dies back, and a rainy season when it grows rapidly. They are found in central Africa (Kenya, Zambia, Tanzania), northern Australia and central South America (Venezuela and Brazil).
  • Desert is the driest and hottest of areas. The world’s largest desert is the Sahara in North Africa. Areas of scrub land that border the desert are calleddesert scrub.
  • Mediterranean climates are not too hot or cold. They are found around the Mediterranean Sea, near Cape Town in South Africa and Melbourne in Australia.
  • Temperate grasslands are dominated by grass and trees and large bushes are scarce. They have a temperate continental climate – the weather is mild with moderate rainfall. Grasslands include the Puszta in Hungary, the Veldt in South Africa, the Pampas in Argentina and the Prairies in the USA.
  • Temperate deciduous forests contain trees that lose their leaves and are found across Europe and USA. The weather is mild and wet. The climate is called temperate maritime.
  • Coniferous forests, containing evergreen trees, are found in Scandinavia, Russia and Canada. They have a cool climate with moderate rainfall called cool temperate.
  • Mountain areas can be very cold at night and during winter. The growing season is short and at higher levels trees will not grow.
  • Tundra surrounds the North and South poles. They have an extremely cold climate, with limited numbers of plants and animals able to survive there.

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