Biomes of The World


Introduction to biomes

Biome is one of the largest biotic geographic units and major life zone. It is the largest community of plants and animals having the same characteristics and living in the same environmental conditions. Biome is rich in various types of communities, the community is named after the vegetation which is dominant in that area eg grassland, coniferous, deciduous forest, etc. Biomes are typically divided into terrestrial and aquatic biomes. Terrestrial or land biomes are classified based on their climatic conditions and dominant vegetation. It includes grassland, desert, tundra, taiga, tropical rainforest, and deciduous and coniferous forests. Water or aquatic biomes are further classified into freshwater and marine biomes. The taiga biome represents the largest terrestrial land biome on earth. It is characterized by the presence of conical-shaped trees called conifers. In this tutorial, we will learn about biomes in depth.

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Why can’t we have fixed biomes?

They are enriched in biodiversities and are classified on the basis of vegetation, and the adjustments of plants and animals in changed environmental conditions. Tundra is a biome that is covered with ice caps, Amazon is a tropical rain forest, savannah grasslands, and aquatic biomes are present in the world. If we consider the amazon rain forest and taiga biomes, both are forests but they are vegetational as well as animal adaptations are different from each other. Though they belong to the same category of forests, Amazon is a rainforest because it is a typical tropical forest that receives plenty of rain, whereas pine tree-laden areas i.e. taiga are called temperate forests, the weather is cold and dry, and the long winter. Because of these differences we cannot have fixed biomes.

Types of biomes

The biomes are classified broadly into two types

  • Terrestrial biomes
  • Aquatic biomes

Terrestrial or land biome

It is a distinct geographical area that constitutes naturally occurring communities of plants and animals. There are six major terrestrial biomes on earth -tropical rainforest, temperate deciduous forest, temperate grassland, desert, tundra, and taiga.

  • Tropical rainforests − Tropical rainforests have a diverse range of habitats. These forests have two seasons dry and wet seasons, the winter season is absent. The rainfall is above 2000 mm and the temperature ranges between 20 0C- 25 0C. The trees have large canopies are they are evergreen. The flora available here are palms, vines, ferns, mosses, orchids, etc. Myriad bird species, bats, snakes, jaguars, etc are found in tropical rainforests.

  • Temperate forests − While temperate seasonal forests, they go through all the seasons. In this type of forest plant leaves change their colour in autumn, falls off in winter and new leaves grow in the spring. This adaption of plants allows them to survive in winter. Temperature varies greatly. These regions are rich in flora like oak, maple, willow, elm, cottonwood, and spring-flowering herbs. Black bears, deer, squirrel, fox, skunk, rabbits, and mountain lions are the fauna habitat in temperate forests.

  • Taiga or boreal forests − This is the largest terrestrial biome. Generally, this type of biome has two season- moist summer and long dry winter. It is characterized by the presence of conical-shaped trees called conifers. Pines, spruce, and fir are examples of conifers. The fauna is wolf, deer, woodpecker, and hare.

  • Deserts − The deserts have the least precipitation compared to all the biomes. The desert can be hot and cold. The hottest desert is found in Sahara in Africa while the coldest is in Antarctica. Plants have long roots and waxy leaves so that they can survive in the condition. The plants and animals have adapted themselves in such a way so that they can survive in minimal water. The animals found here are foxes, snakes, lizards, beetles, and camels.

  • Tundra − It is the coldest biome compared to the other biomes. The climatic condition of these regions is very cold temperatures followed by little precipitation. Biodiversity is not much rich and it’s subdivided into alpine tundra and arctic tundra.

  • Grassland − Grassland is rich in short or tall grasses. It does not get adequate rainfall weather is dry and warm. Temperate grasslands and savannahs are the types of grasslands.

  • Savannah − Savannah is rich in grassland and trees are present in the intervals precipitation is about 6-8 months followed by drought. This type of biome is available in Africa, Australia, and India.

Aquatic or water biomes

Water-based biomes are known as aquatic biomes. The marine and freshwater biome types represent the most important examples of biomes since water is the main constituent of all living organisms.

  • Freshwater biomes − Freshwater biomes contain low salt concentrations. Its salt concentration is less than 1%. Wetland, lakes, ponds, rivers, and streams are examples of freshwater biomes. Oceans are of marine biomes. The flora and fauna found in this region are aquatic plants, algae, plankton, turtle, duck, snakes, etc that play an important role in the food chain.

  • Marine water biomes − In marine water biomes' salts concentration is high. Oceans are of marine biomes. Coral reefs and estuary are also examples of marine biomes

Conclusion

Biomes are the major life zone that exhibits the largest community of plants and animals with the same characteristics and living in the same environmental conditions. Biomes are divided into types namely land biomes and water biomes. Again land and water biomes are subdivided into many different types. The taiga biome represents the largest terrestrial land biome on earth. It is characterized by the presence of conical-shaped trees called conifers.

FAQs

Q1. What are the climatic conditions and habitats of alpine tundra regions?

Ans. It is situated in the high-altitude mountain range across the earth. The temperature is freezing cold at night time. Alpine tundra regions are rich in grasses, mosses, and small shrubs but devoid of trees. Butterflies, mountain goats, sheep, and elk are the common fauna habitat of this region.

Q2. Name the habitats of the savannah.

Ans. Savannah is rich in grassland and trees are present in the interval. The common fauna is the cheetah, hyena, lions, kangaroos, elephants, giraffes, leopards, buffalo, etc.

Q3. What is a food chain?

Ans. It is a network of chains where one organism is eaten by another one. In this way, energy is transferred from one organism to another. Its shows the interdependence of one organism with another one.

Q4. What are the habitats of the marine biome?

Ans. The habitats of marine biomes are algae, aquatic plants, and aquatic animals like octopus, sharks, whales, jellyfish, sea birds, and seaweeds.

Q5. Which is the largest forest on the planet earth?

Ans. The Amazon rainforest is the largest rainforest in the world. It is the shelter for more than 30 million people. Most of the flora and fauna are found in Amazon forests.

Updated on: 29-Nov-2022

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