Tropical Rainforest Biome Alannah & Leanne (Wet, humid and hot year…
Tropical Rainforest Biome Alannah & Leanne
Wet, humid and hot year round. With average temperatures of 27 degrees and little annual temperature ranger of 2 degrees.
Daytime temperatures reach more than 35 degrees with night temperatures rarely drop below 24 degrees giving the Amazon a diurnal temperature range of approx 11 degrees
Days are long with 12 hours for all 365 days. Due to humidity the region seems even hotter humidity reaches 77-87% and comes from intense rainfall. Evaporation and transpiration. There’s a constant cloud cover which acts as a blanket keeping conditions humid through the night.
There are approx 200 rainy days a year. It usually falls in torrential conventional downpours with over 2000mm of precipitation each year. Over half of this is formed due to intense heat that evaporates water from soil and vegetation
The warm temperatures are caused by direct angle of the sun which concentrates its heat over a small surface.
North east and south east winds meet st equator and rise upwards creating a low pressure belt. As the suns heat causes moisture laden air to rise, it condenses leading to formation of thick clouds. Conventional thunderstorms form leading to torrential rainfall.
Chemical weathering of parent material is rapid- deep soils form.
Latosols(tropical red soils) are the zonal soils. 30m deep. Infertile.
Heavy rainfall= leaching. Rainwater washes away nutrients from the A horizon to the B/C horizons. Iron oxide and aluminum oxide escapes. These give the soil a red color.
Bacteria and fungi thrive and break down organic matter into humus. This is absorbed by the roots so it doesn’t accumulate in the soil.
Home to a diverse range of animal life. 30 million species of insect, 1600 species of bird and 2500 species of fish.
Gorillas=African, Orangutans=Indonesian, Jaguars=South American. Each animal adapted to its environment through diet, living habits and body structure.
The canopy layer attracts birds. Parrots, toucans and eagles . Birds nest in the canopy and emergent layers due to protections against predators.
Many animals live in specific layers. They avoid coming into competition with each other. Monkey and squirrels live in the canopy. Many plants depend on animals eating their fruit in order to pollinate.
Monkeys adapted by developing muscular tails that allow them to hang off branches. Their arms are long so they can reach out and grab branches.
The flying squirrel evolved to its arboreal life. It has flaps of skin between its legs to allow it to glide for long distances. It helps it escape predators-tree snake. Most never touch the ground during its lifetime.
Sloths eats fruit, leaves and twigs and spend years hanging upside down. They are slow moving so algae grows on them acting as green camouflage. They’ve a slow metabolism and need little food to survive. They’re nocturnal and stay curled up to disguise themselves from the Jaguar.
Jaguars live on the forest floor. It’s one of the biomes deadliest predators. It has long retractable claws so it can run up trees and make escape difficult for its prey. It’s long tail provides balance and acts as a brake to help it quickly change direction. It has a spotted coat so it blends into the vegetation.
Rain forest has a larger biodiversity. Mahogany, teak and palm oil are just come highly specialised plants that’s grow here. The climate accommodates plant growth throughout the year meaning fruit and flowers are present annually.
There are five layers uniquely developed to avoid competition
Emergent layer: 40-70m high receiving the most sun
There’s less humidity so leaves are smaller and waxy to prevent them drying out when warm climate. These trees have shallow buttress roots with fan out over a wide area to absorb a lot of water and nutrients.
Animals also inhabit the swamp, marshland and rivers.-crocodiles and piranhas. Home to amphibians, reptiles, insects and arachnids. Spiders and frogs are green or brown to blend in. Some are brightly computed to inform predators they’re venomous. Butterflies have large eye patterns to fool predators.
Canopy layer: 30-40m high. Leaves are large to trap light. Shallow buttress roots absorb nutrients and acts as anchor and prevents trees blowing over.
Leaf cutter ants cut pieces of leaves 50 times their own weight which they bury and cover in their saliva causing them to grow fungus which is the sole food for them.
Understorey layer: 15-30m high. Very large leaves trap as much light as possible.
Shrub layer: tall non flowering shrubs, ferns and small trees 5-15m high receiving very little sun so they have leather leaves to catch light.
Forest floor layer: floor to 5m high. Receives 1-3% sunlight resulting in very little growth unless a large tree falls making a clearing .