Index•Introduction: situation, countries, surface and population.•Wildlife: flora and fauna.•Climates: different ecosystems of the continent, each onewith its own details.•Geology: rock, minerals and continental crust.•Industries: most important of the continent.•Agriculture and livestock: crops and animal farming.•Fishing and oceans: fishing industry and the seas in whichits practiced.•History: a brief guide to the story of its culture.
IntroductionAfrica is the continent that compromises the landmass directly south of theMediterranean, and the nearby islands. Africa is not only the second largestcontinent on our planet, being 30’2 million square kilometres, but is also thesecond in human inhabitants, with about 1’0 million people, having 15% of theworld population. It was once connected to Eurasia by the SuezPeninsula, but isn’t any more. It’s divided in 53 countries, none of whichhave an economy to sustain its people, even though some monarchs may livein leisure. Its a continent disrupted by constant wars, that are not reportedin Europe. Thousand of people die every day of hunger, poverty, war and theviolation of their rights. And even though many many try and help indifferent organizations, it’s not enough. We’ve chosen Africa because it’s aninteresting continent and I think it’s beautiful.Martín Fernández Foley.
FloraMartín Fernández FoleyI cannot write everything I’d like on this department, for it’s an extremely large subject.Africa’s vegetation varies from cactus-like plants of the Sahara to the flowers of the south.Because of this, I’ll only talk about 5 plants of Africa.Aloe maculata is a plant species that lives in South Africa, Zimbabwe and Botswana, knowncommonly as Zebra Aloe because of its markings.Protea cynaroides (King Protea) is a flowering plant that appears in South Africa and is thecountry’s National Flower. It looks like a metre tall (in general) bush that has an enormousflower that can be 30 centimetres wide. The flower reminds me of a sunflower that is whitein the middle and has big pink petals.Acacia sieberiana (Paperback thorn) is an African tree that appears throughout thecontinent, being well known in the Savannah. It can be from 3 to 25 metres tall and is thetypical tree that appears in all the documentaries, when the leopard is climbing it. Aninteresting fact is that its gum, is used to make ink.Lobelia deckenii is a plant that grows in valleys through Africa, being well known in Kenya. Itlooks kind of like a cactus, but this species is more humid then the rest of its genus.Anastatica hierochuntica (Resurrection plant) is a plant native to the Sahara desert and hasan amazing ability. It looks like a 15 centimetre high shrivelled up bush that is thrown across
Faunayago radziunas salinasMost birds belonging to the Old World groups. Guinea fowlis the main game bird. Water birds, especiallypelicans, giant herons, flamingos, storks andegrets, gather in large numbers. The ibis is common inthe region of the Nile, and the ostrich in southern andnorthern Africa.Reptiles are of European origin and include mostlylizards, crocodiles and turtles. Throughout theEthiopian area can find variety of poisonoussnakes, including the mamba. Among the highlightsconstrictor snakes pythons, mainly in West Africa, theboa constrictor lives only in Madagascar. There areplenty of freshwater fish with more than 2,000 knownspecies and destructive insects, especiallymosquitoes, army ants, termites, locusts and tsetseflies, the latter transmit sleeping sickness to humans andanimals.The list of fish living in the lakes and seas is almost endless as itis estimated that there are thousands of species that live inAfrica has two distinct areas of wildlife: the northand west area, which includes the Sahara, andthe Ethiopian region, which includes all sub-Saharan Africa.The north and northwest area is characterized by afauna similar to that of Eurasia; aboundsheep, goats, horses and camels. The Barbarysheep, African red deer and ibex are from thenorthern coast of Africa. Foxes inhabit theSahara desert with hares, gazelles and gerbils, asmall rodent jumper.The Ethiopian region is famous for its wide varietyof animals and birds typical. Forests andgrasslands are populated by numerous species ofantelope anddeer, zebras, giraffes, buffaloes, Africanelephants, rhinos, and monos Amongcarnivorous animals we find thelion, leopard, cheetah, hyena, jackal andmongoose. The gorilla, the worlds largestape, living in the rainforests of equatorialAfrica, as well as monkeys, flying squirrels, bats
ClimateAfrica has got eight climates. I´m going to take about them.In the North, in dark blue color, there´s the Mediterraneanclimate, this is found Marruecos. Here the weather is nice in winterand hot in Summer, the rainy seasons are Spring and Autumn.Going down (light orange in the map) there is the Desert climatewich is extremely hot and rains hardly never. there´s the Saharasdesert.In orange there is the Steppe and further south, In lightgreen, the Savanas. Both are Tropical climates . They are hot allyear round and dry, the rainy season is very short and heavy rainsduring the summer. Steppe´s climate dry season is much longer andrainfall are more limited.At Ecuador´s line, we have (in dark green color) the Tropicalclimate wich is very hot and humid all year round.Down the Equador we find Savanas and Steppe climates onceagain with similar charasteristics.In white color we have Highland climate. Here is where the Nilo´sriver bornsIn green color, theres the subtropical climate. This climate is onlyin the South- East of Africa.Finally, we have the marine climate. It Is situated in the area ofSouth Africa. This is a temperate areas with cool winters.Yago Radziunas Salinas
IndustriesAfrica has got some famous industries, but recently the biggestwould be the mining. South Africa has always been famous for itsgemstones, but the continent also exports a lot of the worldsmetals and minerals that can be used for construction orelectronics. An example would be coltan, a mix of columbium andtantalum that is used in electronics. Thousands of people died in awar over this rock, but even today many Congolese die extracting itin horrible work conditions. On the bright side, South Africa’smining is one of the most profitable industries in the world. You canfind gold, diamonds, platinum, coal and other minerals in the area.Yago Radziunas Salinas
Agriculture andlivestockAgriculture in Africa is essential, not only the largest livelihood of most countries, it is also one of thesources of income due to products that are exported. Agriculture in Africa began in the heart of theSahara desert, which in 5200 BC was much more humid and less populated, several native specieswere domesticated, most importantly, the grain crops of millet, sorghum and cowpea, spreadthroughout West Africa and the Sahel. Its easy open fields were growing, but poor soil and lack ofrain to agriculture make impossible the developed. The first to start exporting the products producedin Africa were the Portuguese, then they were joined by other European colonies, these in turnintroduced new farming techniques to improve the quality of food from their settlers.Today Africans should increase by more than 50% their agricultural production if they wish tocontinue feeding the population by 2050. According to agriculture experts from different developmentagencies, the only way to achieve this goal is to engage in organic farming. Eroded soils, poverty andfailure to give proper maintenance to traditional agriculture is one of the biggest problems that facethe majority of AfricansIn Africa, there are raising a variety of animals for different uses, eg cows and goats are used forfood; camels and horses for transportation but they dont represent a big economical activity.Although the African continent is rich in hardwoods, such as mahogany (thin wood), obtained in thejungle region, the lack of adequate transportation and industry engaged in processing, haveprevented villages in this area to receive significant benefits from logging.
FishingFishing Is Africa´s Motor•Fisheries contribute each year at least U$S 10,000 million to the economies ofAfrica. In countries such as Angola, Egypt and Namibia, the industry is a keydriver.•It is also important as Nutrition element. A study published by the NewEconomic Partnership for Africas Development in 2007 concluded that about200 million Africans depend at least partly on fish for nutrition.•But, like agriculture, fisheries fragile resource generally provides income onlyfor small producers. The fish is very important for african people. During thelast few years the fishing was declining because there are many countries whotake their fish.•Yago Radziunas Salinas