Ecosystem: Rainforest

What do you know about the rainforest???

About Rainforests

Rainforests are made up of four layers , all of which have different kinds of plants and animals. These layers are called the emergent layer, the canopy, the understory, and the rain forest floor.


The emergent layer is made up of the tallest trees that tower as high as 200 feet above the forest floor with trunks that measure up to 16 feet around. Most of these trees have large leaves. There is a lot of sunlight on the emergent layer. You can spot eagles, butterflies, bats, and monkeys on this layer.


The canopy layer is the primary layer of the forest and forms a roof over the two bottom layers. Most trees on the canopy layer have smooth, round leaves with pointy tips. This layer is like a maze with so many leaves and branches. There are many animals in this area because of the large variety of food available. You can spot snakes, toucans, and frogs on this layer.


The third layer is the understory layer. There is little sunshine that reaches this area because of the two top layers. The plants here grow larger leaves to reach sunlight. Plants in this area usually do not grow more than 12 feet. Many animals live in this layer, including jaguars, tree frogs, leopards, and also a large amount of insects.


The forest floor is dark; very dark. There are hardly any plants in this layer. No sunlight makes it this low. Anteaters....GIANT anteaters live here.


In some rainforests, it rains more than one inch every day. The average rainfall per year is 250-450 inches. Rainforests do not receive any snow.
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Rainforests are found in Australia, Asia, Africa and Central and South America. The largest rainforest in the world is the Amazon Rainforest in South America.

Rainforests have some of the largest trees and because of all of the rainfall, they have some of the largest rivers in the world. Emergent trees grow to heights of 200 feet or more. They are spaced apart and receive a lot of sunlight, but have adapted to this through the development of specific genetic traits.
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ANIMALS IN THE RAINFOREST

There are many, many animals living in rainforests. More than 50 percent of Earth's animals are housed here. If you like frogs, there are many here. 500 species of frogs can be found in Madagascar. If you are a butterfly person, the Manu National Park, in Peru, is the home of 1,300 species of butterflies! WOW!
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There are also mammals in the rainforests. They come in different sizes. A small mammal being a tiny mouse lemurs, or a large mammal being the African forest elephant. Some other mammals you might find are tigers, jaguars, apes, monkeys, and bats.
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BIOTIC & A-BIOTIC FACTORS

Biotic:
Biotic factors are any and all living things in an environment. The rainforest is full of life with about 15 million different species of animals. A few examples of the many biotic feature are the rubber and bamboo trees, sloths, anteaters, poison dart frogs, lemurs, bromeliads, etc.

Abiotic:
A-Biotic factors of the rainforest include soil, water, rocks, light, and climate.

FUN FACTS

1) Only around 6% of Earth's land surface is rainforest - but about half of all animal and plant species live there!


2) In Central American forests, rival strawberry poison dart frogs might wrestle for up to 20 minutes!


3) It can take ten minutes for a falling raindrop to travel from a rainforest's thick canopy to the floor.

4) A tree known as the idiot fruit grows in Australia's Daintree rainforest.

5) The rhinoceros hornbill bird from southeast Asian forests has a hornlike structure on its head that looks like an extra beak.


6) Rainforests get at least 250cm of rain a year. Sometimes it's almost double that at 450cm.

7) The Amazon rainforest in South America is so big that if it were a country, it would be the ninth biggest in the world.

8) Latin American forests are home to black howler monkeys, whose calls can be heard almost 5km away!


9) Veiled stinkhorn fungi, found in tropical rainforests, smell like rotting food!

10) The Korowai people of New Guinea live in tree houses as high as 45m off the ground!


11) A quarter of ingredients in modern medicines come from rainforest plants.

12) 80% of the flowers in the Australian rainforests are not found anywhere else in the world.

13) Living in Central American rainforests, a sloth an carry algae, beetles and cockroaches in its fur.


14) Some pine trees in Tasmania's temperate rainforests can live for 2,000 years!

15) A lake inside a rainforest on the Caribbean island of Dominica sizzles at around 88°C.

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