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APESIntroductiontotheWorldsBiomes

Objective:Understandtheplants,animalsandclimatethatcharacterizeeachbiomeofthe
world.Site:http://mbgnet.mobot.org/MissouriBotanicalGardens
Browseeachbiomeandfilloutthechartbelowandanswerthequestionsbelowabouteach
individualbiome

TerrestrialBiome Common
Plants/Animals
InterestingFeatures Weather/Climate
Rainforest sloths,jaguars,
parrots,lizards,drip
tips
Itthemostspecies
diversebiomes.
Hot,humidandwet
conditions
Tundra Polarbears,Gyrfalcon Temperaturecanbe
below60degreeF
coldwintermonths
andbriefsummers
Taiga Spruce,hemlockand
fir
bohemianwaxwing
andhawkowl
Inthetaiga,the
averagetemperature
isbelowfreezingfor
sixmonthsofthe
year.
Summerarewarm
andwinterarecold
Desert barren
cactus,saguaro,
AddazandCactus
Wren
Duetolackof
humidity,thedesert
wouldcolddown
rapidly.
Extreme
heat,drynessand
coldnights.
Temperate BankVole,Black
bear,Graysquirrel
Coniferoustrees
Deciduoustree
Thetemperatebiome
have4seasons.
Seasonalweather
Grasslands Perennial
grass,poisonivy
Thesoilarerichfor
agriculture.
1030inchesofrain
peryear.

AquaticBiomes Common
Plants/Animals
InterestingFeatures Weather/Climate
Rivers&Streams Anaconda,Barbel,Co
mmonPufferfish
Riversandstreams
onlyaccountfor.3%
andisvitaltohuman
growth.
Variesonlocation
andexistonall
biomes.
Ponds&Lakes Trout,
Bullfrog,Platypus,and
bitterling.
Lakesandriversare
closelytiedtogether
sincemanyrivers
connecttolakes.
Variesonlocation
andexistonall
biomes.
Wetlands AmericanAlligator,
commonsnipeand
walkingcatfish.
Somewetlandare
seasonalandthe
waterwouldappear
anddisappearin
cycle.
Variesonlocation
andexistonall
biomes.
Shorelines Californiasealion,
Harborseal,and
avocet.
Thelargestwaves
arefoundintheopen
ocean.
Variesonlocation
andexistonall
biomes.
TemperateOceans Bluewhale,plankton,
anddolphin
Thetemperate
oceansencompass
75%ofEarthsurface.
Foundworldwide
TropicalOceans Skate,Spinyeel,
sponges
Somecoralsinthe
coralreefarebuiltup
formanyyears.
Warmerthan
temperate.

TropicalOceansRainforests
1:Whatarethetwotypesofrainforests?IntheUnitedStates,whereareourrainforests
located?(Bespecific).Whatpercentageofouroriginalrainforestsdoesthisrepresent?
Thetwotypesaretemperateandtropical.IntheU.SitlocatedinthepacificNorthwestofthe
U.S.Anditonly40%oftheoriginalrainforest.

Tundra
2:WhereistheTundraBiomelocated?Whatispermafrost?Whatpercentageofthe
EarthssurfaceiscoveredbyTundra?
Itislocatednearthepoles.Permafrostiswhenthesoilissolidtototheicebeingpermanent
their.Cover20%ofEarthsurface.

Taiga
3:WhereistheTaigaBiomelocated?WhatisthesoillikeintheTaigawhy?
Itat50degreelatitudeNandthearcticcircle.Thesoilisthinandlackingnutrientsduetothecold
slowingdowndecomposers.

Desert
4:Howmuchrainfallischaracteristicofdeserts?Explainwheremostdesertsarelocated
andtheRAINSHADOWEffect.
Thedesertgetverylittlerain.Sincemostdesertarelocatednearmountains,theairthatmove
upthemountainwouldlosemoistureandrainorsnow.Andbythetimeitreachthedesert,most
ofthemoistureisalreadyreleased.

TemperateDeciduousForest
5:Whatisspecialaboutthisbiome?Deciduoustreeshavespecialleavesthatareadaptedto
thebiomeexplain.
Thebiomeshave4seasonsthatcorrespondtothechangeintemperature.Theleavesonthe
treeschangecolorandfallofftopreventthewaterintheleavesfromfreezingandpreventitfrom
beingdamageorvulnerabletobacteriaandfungus.

Grasslands
6:Grasslandsarefoundoneverycontinentexceptforonewhich?Howmuchrainfalldo
grasslandsgetwhyisthisimportant?Whatarethe3typesofgrasslandsthatarefoundin
NorthAmerica?Whataregrasslandscalledinotherplacesintheworld?
ItnotinAntarcticaandonlyget1030inchesofrainayear.Becauseifitgettoomuchrainthanit
becomeaforestandifitdoesntrainenoughitwouldbecomeadesert.The3typeofgrassland
inNorthAmericaaretallgrassprairie,mixedgrassprairie,andshortgrassprairie.Inother
placesaroundtheworldiscalledpampas,savannasandsteppes.

Rivers&Streams
7:HowmuchwateronEarthdoesrunningwaterrepresent?Whatisawatershed?What
arethetwomainprocessesthathappentosurfacewater?Whatisthelongestriverinthe
world?WhatisthelongestriverintheUnitedStates?Whatisahydroelectricdam?
Itonly.3%andawatersheddescribeaareaoflandthatcontainsstreamsandriversthatgointo
alargerbodyofwater.TheNileRiveristhelongestriverintheworldandtheMississippiRiveris
thelongestintheU.S.Ahydroelectricdamisamanmadestructurethatcontroloftheriverand
harnesstheflowtospintheturbineinsideandcreateenergy.

Ponds&Lakes
8:Whatisthedifferencebetweenapondandlake?Namethefourstagesofsuccessionofa
pond.ExplainhowanOxbowLakeisformed.Whatisthelargestlakeintheworld?What
isthelargestlakeintheUnitedStates?Whatisthedeepestlakeintheworld?Whatis
LakeEffectSnow?Explain.Whatisthecauseofsummerkillinsomelakes?

Apondisasmallerbodyofwaterandalakeislarger.Thefourstageofsuccessionarethatfirst
ponddevelopseedthatareflownisfrombirdsandanimalsandbecomethepondpioneer.
Second,morecreaturearrivewithdebrisandcausethebottomtoincrease,whichcause
Pondweed,andothersubmergentvegetation,appearsandsoongrowallalongthebottom.
Third,emergentswouldappearattheedgeofthepondandforththebottomisclosetothe
surfacethatemergentscangrowallacrossthefloorandthepondbecomeamarsh.AnOxbow
lakeisformwhenacrescentshapelakecausedepositsofsilttobeleftonthebottomloopon
thecrescent.Andcauseerosiontohaveapinchelikeeffectuntilthecrescentisseparatedfrom
themainriverandformitownlake.
CaspianSeaisthelargestandthelargestlakeintheU.SisSuperior.Andthedeepestlakeiss
LakeBaikalinSiberia,Russia.TheLakeEffectSnowiswhencoldnorthwesternwindpickup
moisturefromthewarmerlake.Asaircoolasitforceduphillwouldcausethemoistureto
condenseandfallassnow.Summerkilloccurwhenthesummeraretoohotduetoclimate
changeandkilloffsometypeoffishandplantlife.

Wetlands
9:Whatarethetypesoffreshwaterwetlandsnameanddefinethem.Explainwhy
wetlandsaresoimportant.Whatishappeningtoourwetlands?
Amarshisaninlandareawithonly16feetofwater.Bogarepeataccumulatingwetlands.
Swampareslowmovingstreams,riversorisolateddepressions.Prairiepotholeare wetland
areafoundinthenorthernGreatPlainsandarenotwetyearround.Andriparianmarsharethat
occuralongrivers.Wetlandsareimportantbecauseitserveasbreedingandfoodsourceto
manyspeciesofanimalandplant.WetlandalsoactasasinkforgreenhousegasCO
2
.
Wetlandsarebeingdestroyedforhumandevelopment.

Shorelines
10:Whatkindoflifeformswillyoufindintheintertidalzone?Whatisabarrierisland?
Whatisanestuary?Whatislifelikeinanestuary?Whatisasaltmarsh?Whatisthe
MangroveForest?Howarethetreesspeciallyadaptedtolivinginthatenvironment?Why
aretheyimportant?
Thelifeformsfoundwouldbetinyalgae,seastar,shells,andbacteriainthesand.Abarrierisland
isanareaoflandthatisseparatedfromthemainlandandserveasabufferbetweenthe
coastlineandthesea.Anestuaryisapartiallyenclosedbodyofwaterwhereincomingseawater
ismixedwithfreshwater.Asaltmarshisawetlandneartheshorelines.Mangroveforestare
nearlargemouthofriversthatprovidelotofsedimentthathelpprotectthecoastlineandprevent
erosion,duetotheMangroverootscollectingsedimentandslowingthewaterflow.

TemperateOceanZones
11:Nameanddescribethedifferentzonesoftheoceanandhowtheyaredivided.Describe
thedifferentphoticzonesoftheocean.Whatarekelpforests?Wherearetheyfound?
Sunlitzoneisthetoplayerwerelightenterthewaterandaidphotosynthesis.Twilightzoneis
whenthesunlightpenetratelessandarehometocreaturesthatarebioluminescence.Midnight
zoneis90%oftheoceanweretherenolightandthepressureisextremeandthetemperatureis
freezing.Kelpforestareunderwaterareaswithahighdensityofkelpandarefoundoffthecoast
ofCalifornia.

TropicalOceanZones
12:Whatiscoralmadeof?Explain.Wherearemostcoralreefslocated?Whereisthe
largestcoralreef?
Coralaremadeofseveralthousandorganismslivingtogetherandmostarelocatednear
shorelandofareathataretropicalwhichareneartheequator.ThelargestcoralreefistheGreat
barriernearAustralia.

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