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Chapter 6.1 Biomes
Transcript of Chapter 6.1 Biomes
Biomes and Vegetation
Biomes are described by their vegetation because the plants that grow in certain regions are the most noticeable characteristics of that region. The plants, in turn, determine the other organisms that can live there. For example, Mahogany trees grow in tropical rainforests because they cannot survive cold, dry weather. Organisms that depend on Mahogany trees live where these trees grow.
Plants in a particular biome have adaptations that let them survive there. For example, plants that grow in the Tundra tend to be short because they cannot obtain enough water to grow larger. Desert plants, such as cactuses have modified leaves so that they can conserve water.
The sloth is just one of the many organisms found in the tropical rainforest, which contains more plant and animal species than any other biome.
Why might it be important to study such a diverse biome?
It could help scientist to identify plant or animal species that could be useful in the development of medicines or other treatments to aid human health.
The tropical rainforest contains more species diversity than any other biome. One animal that inhibits the tropical rainforest is the sloth. These slow moving animals spend most of their lives in the treetops. A green algae grows on the sloth's furry coat, which helps this nocturnal animal blend in with its leafy habitat.
What is a Biome?
Earth is covered by many types of ecosystems. Ecologists group these ecosystems into larger areas known as biomes.
*Biome: a large region characterized by a specific type of climate and certain type of plants and animal communities.
Biomes and Climate
Biomes are defined by their plant life. The main factor that determines this is
Climate. Temperature and precipitation are the 2 most important factors that determine climate.
*Climate: the weather conditions,such as temperature, precipitation, humidity, and winds that occur in an area over a long period of time.
Temperature and Precipitation
Most organisms are adapted to live within a certain range of temperatures and will not survive too far outside that range.
Precipitation is another factor that limits the organisms found in a biome. ALL ORGANISMS NEED WATER! In biomes where rain is not frequent, the vegetstion is mostly cactuses nd desert shrubs. In extrmee cases, lack of rainfall results in no vegetation no matter what the temperature is. The higher the precipitation, the taller and denser the vegetation is.
*Meteorologist: A scientist who studies atmospheric phenomena, such as pressure fronts and humidity, often in order to predict weather. They use Doppler Radar, to read cloud patterns and pressure systems within the layers of the atmosphere. They also predict severe weather such as tornadoes and hurricanes in order to save lives and minimize property damage.
Latitude and Altitude
Climate varies with both latitude and altitude.
*Latitude: The distance north or south of the equator and is measured in degrees with the equator equal to 0 degrees .
*Altitude: The height of an object above sea level,
*Climate gets colder as latitude and altitude increase.