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Tropical Rain Forest. THE TROPICAL RAINFOREST RAP. Rainfall. Rainfall falls regularly throughout the year

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Tropical Rain Forest

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  • Rainfall falls regularly throughout the year
  • The tropical rainforest receives 80-400 inches of rainfall per year, and even more moisture comes from the coastal fog that hovers among the trees.
  • The overall temperature of the tropical rainforest is warm. The average temperature is around 80 degrees Fahrenheit However, the temperature ranges from 68 degrees to 93 degrees. The tropical rainforest has an average humidity between 77 and 88%.
physical features
Physical Features
  • More kinds of trees than any other area in the world.; scientists have counted about 100 to 300 species in one 2 1/2-acre (1-hectare) area in South America.
  • Most tropical rainforest soil is relatively poor in nutrients. Millions of years of weathering and torrential rains have washed most of the nutrients out of the soil. More recent volcanic soils, however, can be very fertile
  • Most of the available nutrients are found in the living plant and animal material. Nutrients in the soil are often in forms inaccessible by plants.
  • Constant warmth and moisture promote rapid decay of organic matter. When a tree dies in the rainforest, living organisms quickly absorb the nutrients before they have a chance to be washed away. When tropical forests are cut and burned, heavy rains can quickly wash the released nutrients away, leaving the soil even more impoverished.
  • There are four very distinct layers of trees in a tropical rain forest. These layers have been identified as the emergent, upper canopy, understory, and forest floor. (Click here for more information on the layers of the rainforest!)
emergent layer
Emergent Layer
  • Emergent trees are spaced wide apart, and are 100 to 240 feet tall with umbrella-shaped canopies that grow above the forest. Because emergent trees are exposed to drying winds, they tend to have small, pointed leaves. Some species lose their leaves during the brief dry season in monsoon rainforests. These giant trees have straight, smooth trunks with few branches. Their root system is very shallow, and to support their size they grow buttresses that can spread out to a distance of 30 feet.
upper canopy
Upper Canopy

The upper canopy of 60 to 130 foot trees allows light to be easily available at the top of this layer, but greatly reduced any light below it. Most of the rainforest's animals live in the upper canopy. There is so much food available at this level that some animals never go down to the forest floor. The leaves have "drip spouts" that allows rain to run off. This keeps them dry and prevents mold and mildew from forming in the humid environment.


The understory, or lower canopy, consists of 60 foot trees. This layer is made up of the trunks of canopy trees, shrubs, plants and small trees. There is little air movement. As a result the humidity is constantly high. This level is in constant shade.

forest floor
Forest Floor

The forest floor is usually completely shaded, except where a canopy tree has fallen and created an opening. Most areas of the forest floor receive so little light that few bushes or herbs can grow there. As a result, a person can easily walk through most parts of a tropical rain forest. Less than 1 % of the light that strikes the top of the forest penetrates to the forest floor. The top soil is very thin and of poor quality. A lot of litter falls to the ground where it is quickly broken down by decomposers like termites, earthworms and fungi. The heat and humidity further help to break down the litter. This organic matter is then just as quickly absorbed by the trees' shallow roots.

geographical locations
Geographical Locations
  • Tropical Rainforests are located near the equator. 57% of all tropical rainforests are found in Latin America. One third of the world's tropical rainforests are in Brazil. Other tropical rainforests are located in Southeast Asia and the Pacific Islands (25% of the world's tropical rainforests) and West Africa (18%).
types of plants
Types of Plants
  • More than two thirds of the world's plant species are found in the tropical rainforests: plants that provide shelter and food for rainforest animals as well as taking part in the gas exchanges which provide much of the world's oxygen supply.
  • Competition at ground level for light and food has lead to evolution of plants which live on the branches of other plants, or even strangle large trees to fight for survival.
  • Some plants:
    • Double Coconut
    • Banyan Tree
    • Coccoloba
    • Talipot Palm
    • Freycinetia
    • etc
  • See Also:
types of animals
Types of Animals
  • Africa Forest Elephant
  • Bengal Tiger
  • Chimpanzee
  • Common Palm Civet/Musang
  • Dawn Bat
  • Golden Lion Tamarin
  • Harpy Eagle
  • Jambu Fruit Dove
  • King Cobra
  • Kinkajou
  • Linn's Sloth
  • Orangutan
  • Proboscis Monkey
  • Red-shanked Douc Langur
  • Silvery Gibbon
  • Slender Loris
  • Sumatran Rhinoceros
  • Toco Toucan
  • Vampire Bat
  • Wagler's Pit Viper
type of water
Type of Water
  • Lakes are composed of fresh water.
  • Some lakes are large enough to create waves.
  • In the summer, lake temperature is split between three layers'
  • Top: around 65-75 degrees Fahrenheit
  • Middle: around 45-65 degrees F
  • Bottom:around 39-45 degrees F
  • Most lakes are large enough to not freeze during winter
  • Temperature is uniform during spring and fall
physical features1
Physical Features
  • Large body of freshwater, larger than a pond
  • Too deep to support rooted plants except near shore
  • In winter, top layer develops a layer of ice
  • Can be the sources of rivers or can be at the end of a river
geographical locations1
Geographical Locations
  • Occur all over the world
  • Roughly around 35o million lakes total
types of plants1
Types of Plants

Emergents- plants that grow out of water

  • Examples-broadleaf arrowhead and soft rush

Floating Plants-plants that have adapted so that their leaves float on the surface of the water

  • Examples-spatter dock, floating pondweeds, and duckweed

Submergents-plants that grow completely submerged under the surface of the water

  • Examples-milfoil and coontail
types of animals invertebrates
Types of Animals (Invertebrates)

Insects- Dragonfly, Damselfly, Mayfly, Stonefly, Dobsonfly, Caddisfly, Cranefly, Water Bugs, Beetles

Crustaceans-Crayfish, Scuds



types of animals vertebrates
Types of Animals (Vertebrates)

Fish- Bluegill, Bass, Catfish, Sculpin, and Minnow

Reptiles- Snakes and Turtles

Amphibians- Frogs

tropical rainforest lake quiz

Tropical Rainforest/Lake Quiz

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2 where are more than 50 of the world s rainforest located
b. Latin America

c. Africa

d. Southeast Asia

2. Where are more than 50% of the world's rainforest located?

a. Pacific Islands



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b. False5.True or False? Tropical rain forests are home to more species of plants and animals than all the other biomes combined.

a. True



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6 when is the temperature of all three layers of a lake uniform
b. Summer

c. Winter

d. Spring and fall

6. When is the temperature of all three layers of a lake uniform?

a. It is always uniform.



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