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Transcript of BIOMES
Tundra comes from the
Finnish word tunturia
meaning treeless plain
. It is noted for its frost-molded landscapes, extremely low temperatures, little precipitation, poor nutrients, and short growing seasons. Dead organic material functions as a nutrient pool. The two major nutrients are
nitrogen and phosphorus
. Nitrogen is created by biological fixation, and phosphorus is created by precipitation. Tundra is separated into two types:
arctic tundra and alpine tundra
Arctic tundra occurs in the far Northern Hemisphere, north of the taiga belt.
The Arctic tundra is a cold, vast, treeless area of low, swampy plains in the far north around the Arctic Ocean. It includes the northern lands of Europe (Lapland and Scandinavia), Asia (Siberia), and North America (Alaska and Canada), as well as most of Greenland
Climate - has long cold winters and short cool summers.
TEMPERATURE - The average winter temperature is -34° C (-30° F), but the average summer temperature is 3-12° C (37-54° F) which enables this biome to sustain life.
AMOUNT OF PRECIPITATION - Yearly precipitation, including melting snow, is 15 to 25 cm (6 to 10 inches).
Permaforst- ground that is permanently frozen (its been there for many years). Because the permafrost has no cracks or pores, nothing can penetrate it--neither plant roots nor water. The surface layer above the permafrost thaws each summer. This layer is called the active layer. Thickness of the active layer depends on its location in the tundra. The more northerly the location, the thinner the active layer is.
PLANTS IN ARCTIC TUNDRA
Sedges look like grass, but they are in a different family. A way to remember the difference is that sedge stems have edges and grasses are round. Sedges on the tundra are small and stunted because of the short growing season. Up to 30 cm (1 ft.) tall
Reindeer Moss/ Caribou Moss (Lichen) grows on rocks or on the ground and looks like a spongy, grayish mass up to 4 inches thick. It has no roots but absorbs moisture from the air. This means it can grow where other plants cannot. Lichens dominate the tundra as the major primary producer.
The Arctic willow is a dwarf shrub which grows close to the ground to avoid the cold wind. It has adapted to the permafrost by growing shallow roots. Sometimes it spreads out covering the ground like a carpet. Inuit call it the tongue plant because of the shape of its leaves.
The beautiful Arctic poppy grows in many places, even among rocks. The flower is made up of four petals formed into a cup-shape. The stems are hairy and 10 to 15 cm high with a single flower on each stem. The flower heads move to face the sun and soak up the heat of the sun.
Arctic tundra moss grows in areas with some water during the year. They typically make the terrain look greenish. Mosses are often thick in the tundra where there is some soil and sufficient water. They can be so thick that they form a soft and squishy cushion in some Arctic areas, making it feel like walking on a soft mattress.
Growing close together
low to the ground
Ability to grow under a layer of snow
to carry out photosynthesis in extremely cold temperatures
to produce flowers quickly once summer begins
small leaf structure
Alpine tundra is located on mountains throughout the world at high altitude where trees cannot grow.
ANIMALS IN ARCTIC TUNDRA
Arctic Ground Squirrel
low temperatures and short growing season
–4 to 0 C
Around 30 centimeters (11.81 inches) per year
TYPE OF SOIL
Soils of the alpine tundra are relatively fragile and subject to erosion when disturbed
can carry on photosynthesis even there's a little carbon dioxide.
make themselves small/dwarf
growing close together
hibernating, migrating to warmer areas, or insulating their bodies with layers of fat and fur.
bodies tend to have shorter legs, tails, and ears, in order to reduce heat loss.
have larger lungs, more blood cells, and blood that can deal with the lower levels of oxygen at higher altitudes.
8 Facts about deserts
• The original meaning of the word desert is 'an abandoned place'.
• Around one third of the Earth's surface is covered in deserts.
• Only around 20% of the deserts on Earth are covered in sand.
• The largest cold desert on Earth is Antarctica.
• The largest hot desert on Earth is the Sahara.
• The Sahara Desert is located in northern Africa, spanning 12 different countries.
• The Arabian Desert in the Middle East is the second largest hot desert on Earth but is substantially smaller than the Sahara.
• Located in South America, the Atacama Desert is the driest place in the world.
Major Types of Desert
Hot and dry
HOT AND DRY DESERT
From left: Baja, Mexico desert; desert in Uluru National Park, Australia; desert near the Kofa Mountains, Arizona.
The seasons are generally warm throughout the year and very hot in the summer. The winters usually bring little rainfall.
Temperatures exhibit daily extremes because the atmosphere contains little humidity to block the Sun's rays. Desert surfaces receive a little more than twice the solar radiation received by humid regions and lose almost twice as much heat at night. Many mean annual temperatures range from 20-25° C. The extreme maximum ranges from 43.5-49° C. Minimum temperatures sometimes drop to -18° C.
Amount of Precipitation
Rainfall is usually very low and/or concentrated in short bursts between long rainless periods. Evaporation rates regularly exceed rainfall rates. Sometimes rain starts falling and evaporates before reaching the ground. Rainfall is lowest on the Atacama Desert of Chile, where it averages less than 1.5 cm. Some years are even rainless. Inland Sahara also receives less than 1.5 cm a year. Rainfall in American deserts is higher — almost 28 cm a year.
Type of Soil
Soils are course-textured, shallow, rocky or gravely with good drainage and have no subsurface water. They are coarse because there is less chemical weathering. The finer dust and sand particles are blown elsewhere, leaving heavier pieces behind.
The animals include small nocturnal (active at night) carnivores. The dominant animals are burrowers and kangaroo rats. There are also insects, arachnids, reptiles and birds. The animals stay inactive in protected hideaways during the hot day and come out to forage at dusk, dawn or at night, when the desert is cooler.
From left: Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area, southern Nevada; sagebrush near Bridger, Montana; Castle Valley, Utah, east of Arches National Park
The summers are moderately long and dry, and like hot deserts, the winters normally bring low concentrations of rainfall.
Summer temperatures usually average between 21-27° C. It normally does not go above 38° C and evening temperatures are cool, at around 10° C. Cool nights help both plants and animals by reducing moisture loss from transpiration, sweating and breathing. Furthermore, condensation of dew caused by night cooling may equal or exceed the rainfall received by some deserts;
Amount of Precipitation
As in the hot desert, rainfall is often very low and/or concentrated. The average rainfall ranges from 2-4 cm annually.
Type of Soil
The soil can range from sandy and fine-textured to loose rock fragments, gravel or sand. It has a fairly low salt concentration, compared to deserts which receive a lot of rain (acquiring higher salt concentrations as a result). In areas such as mountain slopes, the soil is shallow, rocky or gravely with good drainage. In the upper bajada (lower slopes) they are coarse-textured, rocky, well-drained and partly "laid by rock bench." In the lower bajada (bottom land) the soil is sandy and fine-textured, often with "caliche hardpan." In each case there is no subsurface water.
Creosote bush is the most drought-tolerant perennial plant of North America. It can live for at least 2 years with no water at all, by shedding its leaves and even shedding branches. The extreme drought-tolerance of the leaves is due to several factors: the leaves are small with a low surface area for water loss the leaf cuticle is very thick and waxy, and the high stomatal resistance. Coupled with all this, the tissues of the leaves can have very high water potentials, caused by high levels of chemicals, so they can withstand drought conditions.
In its territory the thrasher is unique in its method of foraging. Most of its animal food is obtained by raking away fallen leaves or by digging in the soil. "The bird's most conspicuous structural feature, the long curved bill, is used to whisk aside the litter, and also to dig, pick-fashion, into soft earth where insects lie concealed. Ground much frequented by Thrashers shows numerous little pits in the soil surface, less than an inch deep, steep on one side and with a little heap of earth piled up on the opposite side."
These deserts occur in moderately cool to warm areas such as the Nearctic and Neotropical realm. A good example is the Atacama of Chile.
The cool winters of coastal deserts are followed by moderately long, warm summers.
The average summer temperature ranges from 13-24° C; winter temperatures are 5° C or below. The maximum annual temperature is about 35° C and the minimum is about -4° C. In Chile, the temperature ranges from -2 to 5° C in July and 21-25° C in January.
Amount of Precipitation
The average rainfall measures 8-13 cm in many areas. The maximum annual precipitation over a long period of years has been 37 cm with a minimum of 5 cm.
Type of Soil
The soil is fine-textured with a moderate salt content. It is fairly porous with good drainage. Some plants have extensive root systems close to the surface where they can take advantage of any rain showers. All of the plants with thick and fleshy leaves or stems can take in large quantities of water when it is available and store it for future use. In some plants, the surfaces are corrugated with longitudinal ridges and grooves. When water is available, the stem swells so that the grooves are shallow and the ridges far apart. As the water is used, the stem shrinks so that the grooves are deep and ridges close together. The plants living in this type of desert include the salt bush, buckwheat bush, black bush, rice grass, little leaf horsebrush, black sage, and chrysothamnus.
Some animals have specialized adaptations for dealing with the desert heat and lack of water. Some toads seal themselves in burrows with gelatinous secretions and remain inactive for eight or nine months until a heavy rain occurs. Amphibians that pass through larval stages have accelerated life cycles, which improves their chances of reaching maturity before the waters evaporate. Some insects lay eggs that remain dormant until the environmental conditions are suitable for hatching. The fairy shrimps also lay dormant eggs. Other animals include: insects, mammals (coyote and badger), amphibians (toads), birds (great horned owl, golden eagle and the bald eagle), and reptiles (lizards and snakes).
Lichen growing on Torgerson Island, Antarctica; kangaroo rat.
These deserts are characterized by cold winters with snowfall and high overall rainfall throughout the winter and occasionally over the summer. They occur in the Antarctic, Greenland and the Nearctic realm. They have short, moist, and moderately warm summers with fairly long, cold winters.
The mean winter temperature is between -2 to 4° C and the mean summer temperature is between 21-26° C.
The winters receive quite a bit of snow. The mean annual precipitation ranges from 15-26 cm. Annual precipitation has reached a maximum of 46 cm and a minimum of 9 cm. The heaviest rainfall of the spring is usually in April or May. In some areas, rainfall can be heavy in autumn.
Type of Soil
The soil is heavy, silty, and salty. It contains alluvial fans where soil is relatively porous and drainage is good so that most of the salt has been leached out.
The plants are widely scattered. In areas of shadscale, about 10 percent of the ground is covered, but in some areas of sagebush it approaches 85 percent. Plant heights vary between 15 cm and 122 cm. The main plants are deciduous, most having spiny leaves.
Widely distributed animals are jack rabbits, kangaroo rats, kangaroo mice, pocket mice, grasshopper mice, and antelope ground squirrels. In areas like Utah, population density of these animals can range from 14-41 individuals per hectare. All except the jack rabbits are burrowers. The burrowing habit also applies to carnivores like the badger, kit fox, and coyote. Several lizards do some burrowing and moving of soil. Deer are found only in the winter.
The temperate deciduous forest biome is subdivided onto five zones. The zone levels are dependent upon the height of the trees.
1. Tree Stratum zone
. The Tree Stratum zone contains such trees as oak, beech, maple, chestnut hickory, elm, basswood, linden, walnut, and sweet gum trees. This zone has height ranges between 60 feet and 100 feet. ‘’canopies’Although the canopy is moderately dense, it does allow sunlight to reach the forest floor. This sunlight allows plants in the other layers to grow.
2. small tree and sapling zone
is the second zone. This zone has young, and short trees.
Some of the shrubs in this zone are rhododendrons, azaleas, mountain laurel, and huckleberries.
is the fourth zone. It contains short plants such as herbal plants. During the spring, before the deciduous trees leaf out, these herbs bloom and grow quickly in order to take advantage of the sunlight
It contains lichen, club mosses, and true mosses.
ash, oak, lime, beech, birch and northern arrowwood.
oxlip, bluebells, painted trillium and primrose.
moss, tawny milk-cap mushrooms and lady fern.
A few common animals found in the deciduous forest are,
deer, gray squirrels, mice raccoons, salamanders, snakes, robins, frogs
and many types of insects.
Mammals that are commonly found in a deciduous forest include
bears, raccoons, squirrels, skunks, wood mice, and, in the U.S.,
deer can be found in these forests. While
bobcats, mountain lions, timberwolves, and coyotes
are natural residents of these forests, native ones are elk and bison.
-The plants have adapted to the forests
by leaning toward the sun. Soaking up the nutrients in the ground is also a way of adaptation.
-Many of the trees in the temperate deciduous
forest contain sap which they use to keep their roots from freezing during the winter.
-In the spring, deciduous trees
begin producing thin, broad, light-weight leaves
-In the Fall,
the tree cuts off the supply of water to the leaves
seals off the area between the leaf stem and the
. With limited sunlight and water, the leaf is unable to continue producing chlorophyll, the "green" stuff in the leaves, and as the chlorophyll decreases the leaves change color. The beautiful display of brilliant red, yellow, and gold leaves, associated with deciduous forests in the fall, is a result of this process. Most deciduous trees shed their leaves, once the leaves are brown and dry
-The animals adapt to the climate by
hibernating in the winter and living off the land in the other three seasons.
-Another behavioral adaptation some animals have
adopted is food storage.
-The animals have adapted to the land by trying the plants in the forest to see if they are good to eat for a good supply of food. Also the trees provide shelter for them. Animal use the trees for food and a water sources.
-Most of the animals are
to look like the ground.
south when winter comes.
-Some insects of the temperate deciduous biome
cannot survive winter so they lay eggs before they die. These eggs can survive winter and hatch once spring arrives
The largest temperate deciduous forest biome is found in the Northern part of Russian and into Scandinavia. Here you will find 3 ½ million square miles of land covered in trees!
Tasmanian Temperate Rain Forests
-are home to the largest populations of echidna, or spiny anteater, on Tasmania. The echidna is a monotreme, i.e. a mammal that lays eggs. The Australian Alps are more than 372 miles long, with 50 species of eucalyptus trees found here - about 10% of all Australian eucalypt species.
Eastern North America is a world center for salamander diversity, with more species of salamander being found in the deciduous forests of the Appalachian Mountains than anyplace else on Earth.
The taiga is also known as the coniferous or boreal forest (Snow forest) The taiga is located near the top of the world, just below the tundra biome . The taiga is also known as the coniferous or boreal forest (Snow forest) The taiga is located near the top of the world, just below the tundra biome .
The taiga climate is for the most part
dominated by cold arctic air
. Exceptionally cold winds bring bitterly cold air from the Arctic Circle:
the temperatures fall even more on clear nights when there is no cloud cover
. Because of earth's tilt, the taiga is turned away from the sun in the winter. Less of the sun's radiation reaches the ground to warm it up.
Winter, with it's freezing cold temperatures,
lasts for six to seven months
Summer is a rainy, hot and short season
in the taiga. Fall is the shortest season for taiga. Spring brings flowers, the frozen ponds melt, and the animals come out from hibernation
The average temperature is below freezing for six months out of the year. The winter temperature range is -54 to -1° C
Winter's LOWEST temperature in taiga is -65°F.
Winter's HIGHEST temperature is 30° F.
Summer's LOWEST temperature is 30° F.
Summer's HIGHEST temperature is 70° F.
AMOUNT OF PRECIPITATION
Precipitation is moderately high throughout the year with snow occurring during the winter months. The average precipitation per year is about 40 inches. The average precipitation for the summer is between 10-20 inches. The average precipitation for the winter is between 20-40 inches. The type of precipitation that falls in the taiga climate are rain in summer and mostly snow in winter.
TYPE OF SOIL
- is a soil forming process which prevails in a cold and humid climate where coniferous and acid forming vegetations dominate. The
humus and Sesquioxide
become mobile and leached out from the upper horizons and deposited in the lower horizon. the other bases are also removed and the whole soil becomes distinctly acidic. In fact, the process is essentially one of acid leaching.
Fallen leaves and moss can remain on the forest floor for a long time in the cool, moist climate, which limits their organic contribution to the soil; acids from conifer needles further leach the soil, creating spodosol. Since the soil is acidic due to the fallen pine needle detritus, the forest floor flora consists chiefly of lichens and mosses.
- are ashy gray, acidic soils with a strongly leached surface layer.
Dominant trees in the tiaga are Needleleaf, coniferous (gymnosperm) trees.
Needles on evergreen trees of the taiga are thin, wax-covered and they do not fall off in the fall. The conifers of the taiga keep their leaves all year around
From a biodiversity standpoint, there is little diversity in the main trees. The five main conifer genera found are: the evergreen, spruce (Picea), fir (Abies), and pine (Pinus), and the deciduous larch or tamarack (Larix). In North America, one or two species of fir and one or two species of spruce are dominant. Across Scandanavia and western Russia the Scots pine is a common component of the taiga.
Under certain conditions, broadleaf trees, such as birch and aspen, are able to survive the harsh climate of the taiga.
: The main reasons firs, sprucs and pines are the dominant trees in the boreal forest, and thus define the biome is because they are adapted to the extreme conditions brough about by the cold, including the winter-induced drought and the short growing season. The following are some of the main adaptations we found that trees in this zone have:
1. Conical shape - promotes shedding of snow and prevents loss of branches.
If the snow can't pile up on the branches, there is less risk of broken branches due to the weight of the snow
2. Needleleafs - narrow leaves reduce surface area through which water can be lost (transpired), especially in the winter when the frozen ground prevents plants from replenishing their water supply. The needles of boreal conifers also have thick waxy coatings--a waterproof cuticle--in which stomata are sunken and protected from drying winds.
3. Evergreen habit - retention of foliage allows plants to photosynthesize as soon as temperatures permit in spring, rather than having to waste time in the short growing season merely growing leaves. [Note: Deciduous larch are dominant in areas underlain by nearly continuous permafrost and having a climate even too dry and cold for the waxy needles of spruce and fir.]
• Dark color - the dark green of spruce and fir needles helps the foliage absorb maximum heat from the sun and begin photosynthesis as early as possible.
Migration and Hibernation