Deciduous Forest Biome

Deciduous - falling off or out at a certain season.

Where are they located?

Deciduous forests can be found in the eastern half of North America, and the middle of Europe. There are many deciduous forests in Asia. Some of the major areas that they are in are southwest Russia, Japan, and eastern China. South America has two big areas of deciduous forests in southern Chile and Middle East coast of Paraguay. There are deciduous forests located in New Zealand, and southeastern Australia also. The deciduous forests are located in the temperate zone above the tropical forests and below the coniferous forests. There are some deciduous regions in the southern hemisphere but their plants and animals are different from those of the northern deciduous forests.

Deciduous Climate

The average temperature is around 50° F (about 10° C). The average rainfall is 30-60 inches (75-150 cm ) per year. You can find all four seasons: winter (cold and frosty), summer (hot and humid), fall (cool and breezy), and spring (warm and breezy). There is about a 6 month growing season. In the autumn the leaves change color. During the winter months the trees lose their leaves.

Animals

There are many types of animals in the deciduous forest ranging from mammals like deer to bugs like mosquitoes. Many of the animals are either nut and acorn feeders, or omnivores. Many of the animals have adapted to forest life. Some of them hibernate during the winter months. A few common animals found in the deciduous forest are, deer, gray squirrels, mice raccoons, salamanders, snakes, robins, frogs and many types of insects. Some animals migrate south when winter comes.

Plants

In deciduous forests there are five different zones. The first zone is the Tree Stratum zone. The Tree Stratum zone contains such trees as oak, beech, maple, chestnut hickory, elm, basswood, linden, walnut, and sweet gum trees. This zone has height ranges between 60 feet and 100 feet. The small tree and sapling zone is the second zone. This zone has young, and short trees. The third zone is called the shrub zone. Some of the shrubs in this zone are rhododendrons, azaleas, mountain laurel, and huckleberries. The Herb zone is the fourth zone. It contains short plants such as herbal plants. The final zone is the Ground zone. It contains lichen, club mosses, and true mosses.