Flashcards in Tropical Rainforest Deck (19):
What are the physical characteristics of the tropical rainforest
Hot and wet
Temperatures of 25-28 throughout the year
4000mm rainfall A year (conventional rainfall)
What's the interdependence of climate, water, soils, plants, animals and people
All components depend on the climate to be equatorial and how how it usually is to be able to function how they have adapted to.
Soil depends on water to stay moist and for drink, plants depend on soil and water and animals depend on plants to eat as well as water to drink. People depend on water to drink, plants to act as shelter and cover (soil depends on plants for cover as well) people also depend on animals to eat, plants for materials. If one of these is decreased or Increased all others are affected as the balance is ruined, give example.
How do plants adapt to physical conditions
-shallow roots- trees quickly absorb the nutrients released by decomposition.
-waxy surfaces and driptips- allow excess rainwater to run off easily- prevents growth of algae which would prevent growth of plant
-red leaves- on young plants to protect their internal organs from sunlight for photosynthesis
-lianas- use other trees to clime up rainforest canopy to maximise sunlight absorption
-thin smooth bark- makes it difficult for other plants to grow on other tree surfaces
-buttress roots-large roots gives extra stability in shallow soils for tall trees
-epiphytes- live on surface of other plants/trees
How do animals adapt to physical environment
Spider monkeys live in upper canopy layers rarely encountering with predators- strong tails allow them to
Snakes eg boa constrictor- camouflage techniques are used to catch pray, sometimes extreme slowness and stillness helps them hide from predators
Jaguars- can live within the trees and higher levels of rainforest when floor is flooded
Nocturnal animals eg geckos avoid heat at night
Where are most of nutrients stored
In vegetation, when they die they decay and are then absorbed by the trees
What are the layers of the rainforest
Forest floor - shrubs
The emergent layer - tallest trees
What are issues related to biodiversity
Where is the amazon rainforest found?
Found in South America and covers 40% of the continent, found in the Tropic of Capricorn south of the equator
What are the causes of deforestation- Amazon rainforest
Commercial agriculture and subsistence farming- Tesco - beef -
Logging- slash and burn=co2
Road building- impermeable surfaces& increases access to areas that can be exploited EXAMPLE- Trans-Amazonian highway 730,000Km of rainforest destroyed
Cattle ranching- biggest cause- 80%
Impacts of deforestation
Economic development - has developed countries such as Brazil due to huge cattle ranching. Large companies buy and sell land
Soil erosion-without trees as shelter from rain and wind the soil will wash flood and blow away. This will lead to many problems surrounding vegetation. Cash crops like coffee, soy and palm oil are planted instead of trees however their roots can't hold onto soil =erosion
Contribution to climate change- slash and burn =co2, co2 stores in trees is also released, trees no longer absorb co2.
Value of tropical rainforests to people and environment
Rainforests give us goods- physical things rainforests produces that can be sold and used eg- medicine, soya, aloe Vera, cattle ranching and timber.
Rainforests give us services- Things rainforests give us- not physical eg- oxygen (rainforest produces 20% of worlds oxygen).
-the local indigenous people = Amazonian's &; amerindians
List the sustainable ways we manage our rainforests
Selective logging and replanting
Conservation and education
International agreements about use of hardwoods
Debt reduction (conservation swaps)
What is selective logging and replanting
Trees are only cut once they reach a certain height or circumference, this allows young trees a guaranteed life span and forest will regain full maturity after around 30-50 years
What is conservation and education
Educating people in why and how to save rainforests, understanding the importance of them. Education + raising awareness of rainforests and how much they contribute to our lives.
Eg WWF and green peace
What is ecotourism
Reducing impact of tourism on the beautiful environments. Ensures tourism doesn't exploit the natural habitat. There is a consultation with local communities on planned development making sure infrastructure improves and benefits the lives of the local people.
There are 3 types of ecotourism
-cultural- live and learn with locals, endangered- wildlife sanctuaries where their money goes towards bettering life of animals and adventure- zip line canopy tour
What are international agreements about use of tropical hardwoods
Many countries come together and organise ways to benefit, progress and set goals to resolve certain issues. Powerful countries are normally involved eg USA who help Maximise and speed up rate of protection.
Eg- tropical timber agreement was set up in 2006 to promote the sustainable management of tropical timber producing forests
Location of tropical rainforest
Astride the equator and mostly located within the tropics
(20 n & 20 s)
It's found mainly in South America, central Africa and the islands of south east Asia eg Indonesia
Biodiversity in the rainforest
Although tropical rainforests only cover 7% of earths total land surface they sustain 50% of all species!
There are over 40,000 plant species