Tropical Rainforest Biome

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by farwah5872
Last updated 4 years ago

Discipline:
Science
Subject:
Ecosystems
Grade:
5

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Tropical Rainforest Biome

Tropical Rainforest Biome

An average of 50 to 260 inches of rain falls each year. The temperature rarely gets higher than 93 degrees Farenheit or drops below 68 degrees Farenheit. The average humidity is between 77 and 88 percent. An estimated more than half of the world's plant and animal species live in tropical rain forests, and tropical rainforests produce 40 percent of the world's oxygen.

Tropical rainforests are found in the dark green areas on this map. These regions are Central America, Africa, and Indo-Malaysia.

I'm a Toco Toucan, the largest of the toucans. We have strong feet and toes to support our weight, plus long tongues and tails. I like to live in lowland rain forests, palm groves of South America, and other open areas. Our feather-like tongues help move food along our bills. My toes give me a good grip on branches, and it helps me stay balanced on trees too. I eat berries, fruit, seeds, insects, spiders, stolen eggs from other birds, and lizards.

Hissss! I am a King Cobra. I mainly live in clearings, bamboo stands, edges of the forest, and sometimes near rivers or swampy areas. We can grow up to 12-18 feet long and can weigh 12-20 pounds. Our average lifespan is approximately 20 years. When I feel threatened, I form a hood around my neck and head like right now. We are carnivores that mainly eat other snakes, (thus the meaning of our generic name, "snake eater") but I will eat lizards, some frogs, and even small mammals. A few of our predators are humans, moongoose, and other birds of prey.

We are forest elephants! You might think that there are only two species of elephants in the world: African and Asian. However, we forest elephants dwell in the denser areas of the forest. We are adapted to living there becuase we have straight tusks to avoid getting them caught in vines and underbrush, plus, we have a smaller size than our two other elephant species so we can move arund the forest more easily.

Below is a Toco Toucan.

I'm a kinkajou, hiding in the trees of the upper cannopy during the day napping, and spending my nights hunting on insects, fruit, nectar, and honey. I weigh 3 to 10 pounds. The soles of our feet and sharp claws provide a firm grip while we clim trees. Our average lifespan is quite long and can be over 23 years! We are omnivores and also eat small birds and mammals. Our predators include humans, big cats, and birds of prey. My long tail helps me hang on tree branches and my teeth are good for eating big food and ripping it apart.

This is Bengal Bamboo. It grows well in moist environments with plenty of rainfall and can grow anywhere between 40 and 80 feet tall. This bamboo has dark green straight stalky culms, which are the stems. The leaves are long and narrow and green in color. They grow alternately on opposing sides of the stem, in two rows. This species life span is 25 to 40 years. Bengal Bamboo is important to its environment. It can reduce soil erosion. It sucks up water from heavy rains that might cause flooding. It also provides shelter for many animals. A rainforest has plenty of water for this plant to grow. It physically adapts to its environment by growing tall fast so it gets a lot of rain and sunlight.

This is a Kapok Tree. It can grow to a height of 150 feet or more, towering over other trees in the rainforest. The straight trunks are cylindrical, smooth and gray in color, and can reach a diameter of 9 feet. Large spines protrude from the trunk to discourage damage to the trunk. Thin, plank type buttresses stabilize the giant and can extend to 30 feet. The wood is a pinkish white to ashy brown in color, with a straight grain. The branches grow in horizontal tiers, and spread widely. The crown has an open umbrella shape. Many plants and animals grow and live in the branches of the kapok tree. Birds nest in it, and mammals use the huge branches as highways. Frogs breed in the pools of water that collect in the bromeliads. The kapok tree is widely spread around the world and occupies an important niche in the ecosystem of a rainforest. Emergent trees like the kapok rise above the canopy of the rainforest and provide a home for plants dependent on sunlight. Their branches provide a habitat for countless epiphytes, which provide food and shelter for many types or animals. They allow animals to move around the rainforest without coming down to the ground. Monkeys who venture out to the tops of emergent trees are easy prey for eagles.

The tropical rainforest is a forest of tall trees in an area of year round warmth, found in three major geographical regions around the world, Central America, Africa, and Indo-Malaysia.

This is called a strangler fig. Figs are one of the most important plant species of a rainforest ecosystem. There are close to 1,000 different species of Ficus, which can be found in every major rainforest, tropical continent and islands around the world. Hundreds of animals like pigeons, parrots, hornbills, toucans, monkeys, gibbons, and fruit-eating bats, feed on the sweet fruit of the fig tree. Figs are considered a "keystone" species because they are so important to the animals of the rainforest. This is so because figs bear fruit several times a year. Different species of figs fruit at different times so that there is always a supply of food for animals that depend on fruit as a major part of their diet. A large variety of herbivores and omnivores eat figs. In some forests up to 70% of its animal's diets depend on figs, and the number of fruit-eaters determines the number of predators of fruit-eaters. Some figs grow root systems that develop into thin buttresses that can spread out to a distance of about 30 feet. Other figs grow aerial roots from their branches that, when they reach the ground, root themselves and become another trunk on the same tree. Strangler figs have light colored bark and umbrella shaped canopies. Green above and lighter below, the leaves are simple, ovoid and usually between 1.5 - 3 inches long. Waxy leaves protect the strangler fig from drying winds and sunlight that it is exposed to high in the canopy.

To the left is a Coconut Tree. There are many varieties of coconut trees. The smallest is called the Dwarf palm. They all have a tall graceful trunks topped by light feathery leaves that are 15-17 feet long. The leaves are a yellow greenish color. The trunks are light gray. The coconut grows in rainforests and other tropical climates. The coconut fruit has a hard outside and white meat beneath with a hollow center in which there is coconut milk. After the clusters of flowers bloom they develop into coconuts. It may take a year or so for the coconut tree to mature. One tree can produce 50 nuts. Men harvest the coconuts by climbing the tree and cutting down the bunch of coconuts. The coconut palm tree grows in hot areas. It likes frost free areas, and grows in Africa, Asia, Latin America, and the Pacific region. The tree grows near seas in these areas so the roots can find moisture. In the United States it is found only in Hawaii, the Southern tip of Florida, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands.The coconut palm likes water but it has to be well drained areas. It has shallow roots.

The tualang tree is a majestic emergent tree of the Southeast Asia rainforests best know for the disk shaped honeycombs which hang from its horizontal branches. Towering above the canopy the tualang can reach 250 feet, or the 30 stories in height. These trees can be found growing in the lowland forests of southern Thailand, peninsular Malaysia, northeastern Sumatra, Borneo, and Palawan. Their habitat is the primary tropical rainforest. They prefer damp locations along rivers, in valleys, and the lower slopes of hills.

Roar!! I am a Bengal Tiger. We live in India, Bangladesh, Siberia, and Indonesia. Our average lifespan is about 15 years on average. We are carnivores, and can catch very big animals, although we prefer to eat young or old animals because they can't run as fast. We're at the top of the food chain and greatly feared by our prey!

DID YOU KNOW?-Over 25% of natural medicines have been discovered in rainforests.-80,000 football fields worth of rainforest is cut down every day.-Trees in tropical rainforests are so dense that it takes about 10 minutes for the rainfall to reach the ground from the canopy.


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