A biome is an area on the earth's surface that has a certain set of characteristics. There are seven kinds of biomes in the world: tundra, taiga, temperate forest, tropical rainforest, desert, grassland, and ocean. The map above shows where each of these biomes can be found around the world. Although it does not appear in the key, the ocean is represented by the blue area on the map. Seven Biomes
Desert A desert is a landscape or region that receives very little precipitation. Deserts can be defined as areas that receive an average annual precipitation of less than 250 mm (10 in), or as areas in which more water is lost than falls as precipitation. In the Köppen climate classification system, deserts are classed as BWh (hot desert) or BWk (temperate desert). In the Thornthwaite climate classification system, deserts would be classified as arid megathermal climates.
Open Ocean The largest of all the ecosystems, oceans are very large bodies of water that dominate the Earth's surface. Like ponds and lakes, the ocean regions are separated into separate zones: intertidal, pelagic, abyssal, and benthic. All four zones have a great diversity of species. Some say that the ocean contains the richest diversity of species even though it contains fewer species than there are on land.
Grassland Grasslands are large areas with rolling hills of grasses and wildflowers. Grasslands are found on every continent but Antarctica. Sometimes grasslands are called prairies, savannahs, or steppes. Grasslands cover nearly fifty percent of the land surface of the continent of Africa. While grasslands in general support diverse wildlife, given the lack of hiding places for predators, the African Savanna regions support a much greater diversity in wildlife than do temperate grasslands. .
Rainforest Rainforests are forests characterized by high rainfall, with definitions setting minimum normal annual rainfall between 1750–2000 mm (68-78 inches). From 40 to 75% of all species on Earth are indigenous to the rainforests. It has been estimated that many millions of species of plants, insects, and microorganisms are still undiscovered. Tropical rainforests have been called the "jewels of the Earth", and the "world's largest pharmacy", because of the large number of natural medicines discovered there. Rainforests also supply 28% of the worlds oxygen, processing it through photosynthesis from carbon dioxide.
Tundra In physical geography, tundra is an biome where the tree growth is hindered by low temperatures and short growing seasons. The term tundra comes from Kildin Sami tūndâr , which means "uplands, treeless mountain tract.“ There are two types of tundra: Arctic tundra (which also occurs in Antarctica) and alpine tundra. In tundra, the vegetation is composed of dwarf shrubs, sedges and grasses, mosses, and lichens. Scattered trees grow in some tundra. The ecotone (or ecological boundary region) between the tundra and the forest is known as the tree line or timberline.
Temperate Forest The Temperate deciduous forest is a biome found in the eastern and western United States, Canada, central Mexico, southern South America, Europe, China, Japan, North Korea and parts of Russia. A temperate deciduous forest consists of trees that lose their leaves every year. Some of these trees include oak, maple, beech, and elm. The temperate deciduous biome can be found on almost every continent. In a temperate forest, most of the trees lose their leaves in the winter. During the fall, when the weather gets cooler, the trees begin to shut down. Their leaves turn beautiful shades of colors. Come winter time, the leaves fall off of the trees.
Taiga Taiga, the world's largest biome, has a harsh continental climate with a very large temperature range between summer and winter. Aside from the tundra and permanent ice caps, it is the coldest biome on Earth. High latitudes mean that for much of the year the sun does not rise far above the horizon. Winters last at least 5-6 months, with average temperatures below freezing. Temperatures vary from −50 °C to 30 °C (-58°F to 86°F) throughout the whole year, with eight or more months of temperatures averaging below 10 °C (50°F). The summers, while short, are generally warm and humid. In general, taiga grows to the south of the 10 °C July isotherm, but occasionally as far north as the 9 °C July isotherm.