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An overview of the main terrestrial biomes with a focus on the taiga.

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  1. 1. Biodiversity - the variety ofspecies living in balance withinan ecosystem, biome or planet.
  2. 2. The Amazon rainforest is abiodiversity hotspot due to thenumber and variety of species
  3. 3. Biome - a major ecosystemcharacterised by commonalitiesof animals, plants and climateand soil.
  4. 4. For example, most hot and drydeserts have little rainfall withfew plants and mammals.
  5. 5. Biodiversity
  6. 6. High biodiversity usually meansa more stable system, withfewer cyclical explosions in preyor predator.
  7. 7. Biodiversity is a measure of thehealth of ecosystems, but notthe total indicator. Polar icesheets support less biodiversitybut this healthy.
  8. 8. Biodiversity is read on threelevels.
  9. 9. • Species Diversity - The amount of different species inthe community and variation within populations of agiven species.
  10. 10. • Species Diversity - The amount of different species inthe community and variation within populations of agiven species.• Ecosystem Diversity - The variety of habitats,communities and ecological processes within andbetween ecosystems.
  11. 11. • Species Diversity - The amount of different species inthe community and variation within populations of agiven species.• Ecosystem Diversity - The variety of habitats,communities and ecological processes within andbetween ecosystems.• Genetic Diversity - The variety of genes held withinall members of a population.
  12. 12. Biodiversity can affect thestability of ecosystems and thesustainability of populations,including humans...
  13. 13. ... as each species areinterdependent in bothstraightforward and subtleways.
  14. 14. Biomes in more detail
  15. 15. There are 8 officially classified terrestrial biomes (plusmarine and freshwater):1. Temperate forest2. Tropical forest3. Conifer (taiga/boreal)4. Tropical savannah5. Temperate grassland6. Chaparral7. Tundra8. Desert
  16. 16. Temperate forests occur ineastern North America, north-eastern Asia, plus western andcentral Europe.
  17. 17. Climatic influences includewell-defined seasons.
  18. 18. Flora is typified by deciduoustrees is such species as oak andbeech, plus temperatewoodland flowers and fungi.
  19. 19. Fauna is represented bysquirrels, rabbits, birds, deer,fox, and black bear.
  20. 20. Tropical forests occur closer tothe equator than temperateforest.
  21. 21. Climatic influences include littleseasonality or temperaturevariation, although they mayhave a rainy season.
  22. 22. Flora is highly diverse, with avast variety of tree species andplants such as orchids, vines,ferns and mosses.
  23. 23. Fauna include numerous birds,bats, primates, small mammals,and insects.
  24. 24. Coniferous forests(taiga/boreal), are found innorthern latitudes; Siberia,Scandinavia, Alaska, andCanada and Eurasia.
  25. 25. The main climatic influences arelong winters and a shortsummer growing season.
  26. 26. Flora consists mostly of cold-tolerant evergreen conifers withneedle-like leaves, such as pine,fir, and spruce.
  27. 27. Fauna include woodpeckers,hawks, moose, bear, weasel,lynx, fox, wolf, deer and hares
  28. 28. Tropical savannahs are found ina wide band on either side ofthe equator on the edges oftropical rainforests.
  29. 29. The main climatic influence israinfall concentrated in half theyear, followed by a long periodof drought when fires canoccur.
  30. 30. Flora consists mostly ofgrasslands with scatteredshrubs or trees.
  31. 31. Fauna is highly diverse,including giraffes, zebras,snakes, worms, lions, leopards,hyenas, and elephants.
  32. 32. Chaparral is found on mostcontinents, from the west coastof the US to the western tip ofAustralia and the coastal areasof the Mediterranean.
  33. 33. The main climatic influence isheat and lack of moisture.Winters are mild with summerso hot and dry that fires anddroughts are common.
  34. 34. Flora is typified by small, hardleaves which hold moisture.Some of these plants are poisonoak, scrub oak and cacti.
  35. 35. Fauna includes coyotes, jackrabbits, mule deer, alligatorlizards, horned toads andpraying mantis.
  36. 36. Arctic tundra is located in thefar northern hemisphere,encircling the North Pole andextending south to theconiferous forests.
  37. 37. The main climatic influence iscold (-34°C) and lack ofmoisture with a summergrowing season (3-12°C) of just50 to 60 days.
  38. 38. Flora includes shrubs, sedges,reindeer mosses, liverworts, andgrasses, small flowers andlichen.
  39. 39. Fauna includes caribou, arctichares and squirrels, foxes andwolves.
  40. 40. Desert biomes occur whereverthe rainfall is less than 50cm/year. Hot-dry deserts occurin North Africa, south-westernU.S., Mexico, and Australia.
  41. 41. Hot-dry desert biome is typifiedby heat with little seasonalvariation, evaporation ratesusually exceed rainfall rates.
  42. 42. Hot-dry desert vegetation israre outside of oases. Plants arealmost all ground-huggingshrubs such as Prickly Pears andBrittle Bush.
  43. 43. Hot-dry desert fauna includesnocturnal insects, arachnids,reptiles and birds.
  44. 44. Hot-dry desert fauna includesnocturnal insects, arachnids,reptiles and birds.
  45. 45. Taiga
  46. 46. Taiga is the largest terrestrialbiome at 28% of the planet,located just below the tundrabiome.
  47. 47. The main seasons are coldwinters and snow, with humidityand high precipitation insummer.
  48. 48. There are few species of faunain the taiga because of theharsh conditions, poor soil andpermafrost.
  49. 49. Frost-resistant coniferous treeslike pine, spruce and Douglas firpredominate as well as lichensand mosses.
  50. 50. Seed eaters like finches andsparrows, and omnivorous birdslike crows stay all year round.
  51. 51. The taiga has an abundance ofinsects in summer, when manyinsect-eating birds like geesecome to feed and breed.
  52. 52. Fauna of the taiga includesnowshoe rabbits, red squirrelsand voles. They are predatedupon by wolverines, arctic fox,lynx and bobcat.
  53. 53. The current rate logging inboreal forests may cause theirdisappearance.
  54. 54. The permafrost contains a hugequantity of methane, a powerfulgreenhouse gas which may bereleased if the permafrost melts
  55. 55. END