The Tundra

Devin Edwards, Autumn Blankenship

Things about the Tundra

The arctic tundra is a cold place with temperatures that are as low as 10 to 20 fahrenheit this is in the winter. The tundra is a type of biome were tree growth is hindered by low temperatures.The term tundra comes from Russia.

Animals in the Tundra and why they live there

  • Bearberry-Bearberry is a low growing evergreen. It has a stem that rises 2-8" off the ground and is covered in a thick bark and fine silky hairs. On the stem are many oval-shaped, leathery leaves that are _" to 1" long. The flowers have five petals and are pale pink or white. The petals are only _" long and are curled around the narrow center. They bloom anywhere between March and June. The fruit is a red berry 3/8" in diameter. Bearberry gets its name because bears like to feast on these berries.
  • Arctic Moss-The Calliergon giganteum grows in the arctic tundra which is a harsh cold environment in the Northern Hemisphere within the arctic circle.
  • Caribou Moss-Caribou moss grows in arctic and northern regions around the world. It grows on the ground and on rocks. It looks like a foamy, gray-green spongy mass, and grows to be 1 to 4 inches high. The stems, or stocks, are hollow, and branch out many times. Although it is called caribou moss, it is actually a lichen.
  • Diamond Leaf Willow- They can be used seal oil to add vitamins. Seal oil is also used to preserve leaves. Willow leaves can be dried and used in tea and soup as flavoring. Willow leaves are a good source of nutrients for animals and people of the tundra. Wood from the willow is good to use to start a fire with, since it burns easily.
  • The caribou which is what Europeans call reindeer is highly adapted to life on the Arctic tundra. Besides the behavioral adaptation of migrating to escape the worst of the winter cold, they have changed physically, inside and out, to live in this demanding biome.
  • Polar bears are able to swim in the icy Arctic Ocean without freezing. They have thick oily fur coats and a layer of fat (blubber) under their skin. When bears comes out of the water they shake the water off their coats.

How do animals in the tundra survive

  • Caribou-caribou have a compact, stocky body with a short tail and ears to avoid losing body heat. Their skinny legs have veins and arteries that run side by side, so that the heat of the arterial blood coming from the body warms the cooler venous blood returning from the lower legs. Their noses have a special chamber for holding heat and moisture from their exhaled breath to warn the incoming icy Arctic air before it can chill their lungs.
  • owls they have double layers of feathers and that helps them coat with the cold and because of them having double feathers they keep a 104 degrees even when it is 29 degrees below there tows are also feathered.
  • Millions of birds arrive to the tundra to breed including swans, ducks, geese, loons, waders, and songbirds.

Is the tundra a good place to grow food

Farming in the tundra can be