Science Biomes


Terms in this set (...)

Large regions characterized by a specific type of climate and certain types of plant and animal communities
What is each biome made up of?
Many different ecosystems
Ripple effect
Any change of one part of an environment, like an increase or decrease of a species of animal or plant causes what?
What are biomes described by and why?
Their vegetation because plants that grow in an area determine the other organisms that can live there
Plants in a particular biome have what?
Characteristics, specialized structures, or adaptions that allow the plants to survive in that environment
What do those adaptions include?
Size, shape, and color
The average weather conditions in an area over a long period of time
What are the two most important factors that determine a regions climate?
Temperature and precipitation
The distance north or south from the equator; expressed in degrees
The height of an object above a reference point such as sea level or earths surface
What biomes are the most widespread and the most diverse?
Forest biomes
What are the three main forest biomes in the world?
Tropical, temperate, and coniferous
What are tropical rainforests?
Forests or jungles near the equator
What are tropical rainforests characterized by?
Large amounts of rain and little variation in temperature and contain the greatest known diversity of organisms on earth
Which biome play vital roles in nitrogen, carbon, and oxygen cycles?
Tropical rainforests
How is the tropical rainforest's temperature?
It is very warm and maintains a constant temperature which is ideal for a wide variety of plants and animals
Where are most nutrients at in the tropical rainforest?
Within the plants
What do decomposers on the tropical rainforest floor do?
They break down dead organisms and return their nutrients into the soil, then plants quickly absorb the nutrients
What are the 4 main layers of the tropical rainforest?
Emergent layer, upper canopy, lower layer, understory
What is the emergent layer?
The top foliage layer in a forest where the trees extend above surrounding trees.
Emergent layer
Trees in this layer grow and emerge into direct sunlight reaching heights of 60 to 70 meters and 5 meters around.
Emergent layer
Animals such a s Eagles, monkeys, bats, and snakes live here.
What is the canopy layer?
The layers of treetops that shade the forest floor, and is considered to be the primary layer of the rainforest
Which layer has trees more than 30 m tall which forms a dense layer that absorbs up to 95% of sunlight?
The canopy layer
Which layer of the canopy receives less sunlight?
The lower
What are epiphytes?
Plants that use another plant for support but not for nourishment and are located on high trees in the canopy
What advantages do epiphytes have growing on tall trees?
They can reach the sunlight needed for photosynthesis, and they can absorb the water and nutrients that run down the tree after it rains
Why do most animals in the rainforest live in the canopy layer?
Because they depend on the abundant flowers and fruits that grow there
What is the understory layer?
The foliage layer that is underneath and shaded by the main canopy of the forest
Which layer does little light reach allowing only trees and shrubs adapted to shade to grow there?
The understory
The diversity of vegetation has led to..
A diverse community of animals
Most rainforest animals are ________ that use specific resources in particular ways to avoid competition and have adapted ways to capture pray and avoid predators.
What do insects use to hide from predators that make some look like leaves or twigs?
What are some threats to a rainforest?
Every minute of everyday 100 acres of tropical rainforests are logging, agriculture, and oil exploration.
Exotic pet trading robs the rainforest of rare and valuable plant and animal species that live there.
Habitat destruction.
50 million native people live there and are also in danger of loss of habitats.
Temperate rainforests
Forest communities that are characterized by cool, humid weather and abundant rainfall, tree branches are draped with mosses, tree trucks are covered with lichens, and the forest floor is covered with ferns.
Where are temperate forests located?
North America, Australia, and New Zealand
Temperate deciduous forests
Forests characterized by trees that shed their leaves in the fall and locate between 30 and 50 degrees north latitude
What is the weather like in a temperate deciduous forest?
It can be warm in the summer and below freezing in the winter
Plants of the deciduous forest
Grow in layers with tall trees dominating the canopy while shrubs cover the understory.
More light reaches the forest floor allowing more plants to grow.
Adapted to survive seasonal changes.
In the fall and winter trees shed their leaves and seeds go dormant under the insulation of the spring the trees grow new leaves and seeds germinate.
Animals of the deciduous forest
Adapted to use the forest plants for food and shelter.
Birds cannot survive the harsh winter weather so the migrate south for warmer weather and better availability of food.
Other animals such as mammals and insects reduce their activity so that they do not need as much food or energy, enabling them to survive the winter.
The region of evergreen, coniferous forest below the Arctic and subarctic regions.
Long winters and little vegetation.
Growing season can be a short as 50 days with most plant growth occurring during the sips mere months because of nearly so start daylight and larger amounts or precipitation.
Plants of the taiga
A conifer is a tree that has seeds that develop in cones. Their leaves arrow shape and waxy coating helps them to retain water in the winter. It's shape also helps the tree shed snow to the ground and not get weighed down. Their needles contain substances that make the soil acidic when they fall to the ground preventing plants from growing on the floor.
Soil forms very slowly.
Animals of the taiga
It has many swamps and lakes in the summer that attracts birds that feed on insects.
To avoid harsh winters birds migrate, while some year round residents burrow underground for better insulation.
Other animals have adapted to avoid predation by shedding their. Down summer fur and growing white fur that camouflages them in the winter snow.
Plains full of grasses and scattered trees and shrubs that are found in tropical and subtropical habitats.
Found mainly in regions with a dry climate.
Although they have little precipitation they have a wet and a dry season.
Many animals are only active during the wet season.
Grass fires help restore nutrients to the soil during the dry season.
Plants of the savanna
Because most of the rain falls during the wet season plants must be adapted to surviving long period of time with no water.
Some have large horizontal root systems to help them survive the dry season. These roots also enable the plant to grow quickly after a fire.
The grasses also have coarse vertical leaves that expose less surface area to help conserve water, while some trees shed their leaves.
Almost all have thorns to protect them from herbivores.
Animals of the savanna
Grazing herbivores have adapted migratory ways of life, following the rains to new areas of grass and fresh watering holes.
Predators often stalk these animals for food.
Give birth only during the rainy season when food is abundant and the young are more likely to survive.
Some species of herbivores reduce competition for feeding by eating vegetation at different heights than other species do.
Temperate grasslands
Communities that are dominated by grasses have few trees and are characterized by hot summers and cold winters with rainfall that is intermediate between that of a forest and a desert.
Most fertile soil of any biome.
Few natural temperate grasslands remain because many have been replaced by grazing areas and farms.
In areas where there is too little rain for trees to grow. Usually mountains will block the rain clouds.
Rain increases as you move eastward allowing taller grasses to grow.
Plants of temperate grasslands
Root systems of prairie grasses form dense layers that survive drought and fire allowing players to come back from year to year.
Few trees can survive because of lack of rainfall, winds, and fire,
The amount of rainfall in the area determines the type of plants that will grow in the area with various root depth and grass height.
Animals of temperate grasslands
Some grazing animals have large flat teeth for chewing the coarse prairie grasses.
Other grassland animals live protected in underground burrows that protect them from predators on the open grasslands.
Threats to the temperate grasslands
Farming and overgrazing.
Grain crops can it hold soil in place as well as native grasses can because the roots of crops are shallow so soil erosion eventually occurs.
Erosion is also caused as the grasses are constantly eaten and trampled.
A type of temperate woodland biome with vegetation that broad leafed evergreen shrubs and is located in an area with hot, dry summers and mild, wet winters.
Located in the middle latitudes about 30 degrees both and south of the equator. Primarily in coastal areas that have Mediterranean climates.
Plants of the chaparral
Low lying evergreen shrubs and small trees that tend to grow in dense patches.
These plants have small leathery leaves that contain oils that promote burning allowing natural fires to destroy competing trees.
Well adapted to fire and can re-sprout from small bits of surviving plant tissue.
Animals of the chaparral
A common adaption is camouflage, shape or coloring that allows an animal to blend into its environment.
Some animals have a brown color fur that lets them move threw brush without being noticed.
Threats to the chaparral
Worldwide the greatest threat is human development
Regions that have title or no vegetation long period without rain and extreme temperatures.
There are hot and cold deserts but they are both the driest places on earth.
Located near mountain ranges because mountains can block the passage of moisture filled clouds limiting precipitation.
Plants of the desert
All desert plants have adaptations for obtaining and conserving water which allows the plants to live in dry desert conditions.
Plants called succulents have thick fleshy stems that conserve water. Their leaves also have a waxy coating to prevent water loss while sharp spines on the plant keep animals away.
Many roots spread out just under the surface to absorb as much water a possible.
When the weather gets really dry some plants die and drop their seeds keeping them dormant until the next rainfall.
Aminals of the desert
Reptiles have think scaly skin that prevents water loss.
Amphibians survive by estimating or burying themselves in the ground and sleeping through the dry season.
Insects are covered with body armor that helps them retain water.
Most animals are nocturnal meaning they are more active at night or duck when it is cooler.
A treeless plain that is located in the Arctic or Antarctic and is characterized by very low winter temperatures, short, cool summers and vegetation that consists of grasses, lichens, and perennial herbs.
Permafrost is the permanently frozen layer of soil or so soil and can be found in the tundra regions.
Vegetation of the tundra
Mosses and lichens which grow without soil cover vast areas of the tundra.
The soil is thin so the plants have wide shallow roots to help anchor them against the icy winds.
Most flowering plants are short which keeps them out of the wind and helps them absorb heat from the sunlit soil.
Woody plants and perennials have evolved dwarf forms that grow flat along the ground.
Animals of the tundra
Millions of migratory bird fly to the tundra in summer to breed when food is more abundant.
Caribou migrate throughout the tundra in search of food and water.
Hunters such as wolves prey or migratory caribou, deer, and moose.
Rodents stay active but burrow underground to avoid the cold.
Other year round residents lose there brown summer coat for white fur so they blend in with the snow.
Threats to the tundra
One of the most fragile biomes in the planet.
The food chains are relatively simple so they can easily be disrupted.
Until recently these areas have been undisturbed by humans, but they found oil there.
Pollution caused by spills of the oil could poison the food and water the organisms if the tundra need to survive.