Intro:

::The Tropical Rainforest Biome is one of the most productive areas in the world.

:: The abundant sunlight,warm temperatures and and daily rain lead to adundance in nutrients therefore, plant growth is rapid.

:: This is a land without winter thus there are flowers all year round.

:: The forest has been in existence for 70 million and 100 million years so this biome isvery old.

:: Animals and plants had the opportunity to adapt to each other very closely since none of them need to migrate there is no cold season present.

:: Nutrients in soil is actually poor and soil is acidic; not much nutrients are present this is due to the fact that years of rain has washed minerals out of the soil so all nutrients are actually in living plants and animals.

:: Competition therefore for minerals is feirce


Location/ Geography:

:: Central America, Caribbean islands, equatorial South America and western Africa, southeastern Asia from India to Malaysia, northern Australia, and many Pacific Islands.

:: Mainly located around the belt of the equator, in the Amazon basin in South America, the Congo Basin and other lowland regions in Africa, and on mainland islands of Southeast Asia; especially abundant on Sumatra and New Guinea

::Small areas also found in Central America and along the Queensland coast of Australia

::Found between 10 degree north and 10 degree south latitude at elevations below 3,000 feet with 3 major distinct formations:
NeotropicalAmazonia into Central America)
African (Zaire Basin with an outlier in West Africa; also Eastern Madagascar)
Indo-Malaysian (west coast of India, Assam, Southeast Asia, New Guinea and Queensland Australia)



Climate:

::Climate is very warm, has an average annual temperature of greater than 20 degrees celcius.
:: has very little seasonal variation in temperature or day length, which is very favorable for plant growth.

:: temperatures ranges from temperatures ranging from 25 to 28C during the day and 21 to 22C at nightmore than 250 cm of annual rainfall.

:: In only a month the rain forest receives 4 inches of rain

::50 % of the precipitation comes from its own evaporation.


Species inhabiting the biome:

:: South America:

- insects ( morpho butterfly, Julia butterfly, Monarch butterfly, and millions of other insects)

- mammals (jaguar, ocelot, didelphid opossums, sloth, howler monkey, spider monkey, capybara, many bats, mamosets, procynoids, peccaries)

- birds (quetzal, macaw, tinamous, curassows, hoatzins, hummingbirds, eagles, ovenbirds, antbirds, flycatchers, puffbirds, toucans, jacamars, tanagers, tapirs, troupials, honeykeepers)

- reptiles ( anaconda, caiman, iguanas, lizards, microteiid lizards, boas, coral snakes)

- fish ( electric eel, piranha) and millions of other animals.


:: Australia

- mammals ( tree kangaroo, rat kangaroo, yellow rooted Antechinus, opossums, bandicoot,ehcidna, duck billed platypus, sugar, glider)

- birds (cassowary, brolga, emerald dove, orange rooted scrubfowl, Australian brushturkey, sarus crane, Australian king parrot, golden whistler, laughing kookaburra, fernwren etc)

- reptiles (frilled lizard, carpet python, green tree snake, spotted tree monitor, eastern war dragon, boyd's forest dragon, nothern leaf tailed gecko)

- insects ( ulysses butterfly, zodiac moth, union jack butterfly, regent skipper, birdwing butterfly)

- amphibians ( giant tree frog, striped marsh frog, northern barred frog, dainty green tree frog) millions of other animals..


:: Southeast Asia

- mammals ( tarsiers, orangutans, siamangs, gibbons, colobine monkeys, tigers, tree shrews, binturong, moonrats, most flying foxes, bamboo rats)

- birds ( tree swifts, leafbirds, fairy bluebirds, fantails, whistlers, flowerpeckers)

- insects (Queen Alexandra's birdwing buttterfly, goliath birdwing butterfly, saturn butterfly) millions of other animals..


:: West Africa

- mammals (antelopes, bonobo, chimpanzee, gorilla, mandrill, scaly0 tailed squirrels, otter shrews, duikers)

- birds (congo peafowl, african gray parrot) millions of other animals..

Topography:

:: tropical rain forest trees have exceptionally thin bark, often only 1-2 mm thick; usually very smooth althought sometimes armed with spines and thorns.

:: development of flowers and fruits directly from the trunk.

:: oxisols, infertile, deeply weathered and severely leached.

:: large leaves are common among trees

:: vegetation has 3 layers indentified as layer A, B, or C.
- A layer or the emergents:: widely spaced trees 100 -120 feet tall with umbella shaped canopies. they also tend to have small leaves.

- B layer :: closed canopy of 80 foot trees. light is readily available at the top of this layer but greatly reduced at the bottom.

- C layer:: closed canopy of 60 foot trees. there is little air movement in this zone and humidity is consequently high.

- understory layer :: less than 3% of the light intercepted at the top of the forest canopy passes this later.

- ground / forest floor layer:: sparse plant growth. less than 1% of the lgiht that strikes the top of the forest penetrates the forest floor.

Environmental Concerns:

:: dissapearing at about 80 acres per minute, day and night.

:: many undiscovered species that are being destroyed. many of those species could be possible cures for cancer and AIDS.

:: if destruction continues, major climatic changes will occur.

:: Cutting of forest to create large expanses of grazing land, rapidly depleting tropical forests, therefore resulting in soil depletion, erosion and changes in local climates.

:: the mining and logging (for lumber and pulp) resuled in forest destruction and pollution, silting, and other water problems.

:: the introduction of exotic species often resulting in loss of native species. It is estimated that nearly 50 species go extinct each day in the tropics, largely due to human pressures.

:: the cutting down of trees results in erosion.

:: a tremendous variety of tropical rain forest plants have been cultivated by humans