south america region

by zein vaughn

south america region

The geography of South America contains many diverse regions and climates. Geographically, South America is generally considered a continentforming the southern portion of the American landmass, south and east of the PanamaColombia border by most authorities, or south and east of thePanama Canal by some. South and North America are sometimes considered a single continent or supercontinent, while constituent regions are infrequently considered subcontinents. Geopolitically and geographically, all of Panama—including the segment east of the Panama Canal in the isthmus—is generally considered a part of North America alone and among the countries of Central America.

South America became attached to North America only recently (geologically speaking) with the formation of the Isthmus of Panama some 3 million years ago, which resulted in the Great American Interchange. The Andes, likewise a comparatively young and seismically restless mountain range, run down the western edge of the continent; the land to the east of the northern Andes is largely tropical rain forest, the vast Amazon River basin. The continent also contains drier regions such as eastern Patagonia and the extremely arid Atacama desert.

The South American continent also includes various islands, most of which belong to countries on the continent. The Caribbean territories are grouped with North America. The South American nations that border the Caribbean Sea—including Colombia, Venezuela, Guyana, Suriname, and French Guiana—are also known as Caribbean South America.