JUNGLE ECOSYSTEM and its Characteristics

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Did you know that the jungles of the planet store up to 50% of the CO2 that exists in the atmosphere? In this way, the abundant vegetation of the jungle ecosystems helps to avoid atmospheric pollution, playing a really important ecological role. In addition to their vital function as lungs of the planet, the forests of tropical regions are authentic reserves of biodiversity, both for animals and plants. This fact is due to the magnificent conditions that allow the development of the life of innumerable species, providing them with large amounts of food, as well as water, light and shelter.

Continue reading this Green Ecologist article to learn more about the jungle ecosystem and its characteristics, and you will learn what species of flora and fauna are home to these immense tropical forests.

Types of jungle

The jungles flood the different and numerous tropical regions of the planet in which they are located with life and color. To classify them and know the different types of forests that exist, it is important to choose a classification parameter, for example, the type of climate and vegetation they present:

  • Tropical forests: Characterized as the rainiest ecosystems on the planet, tropical forests have numerous huge trees and climbing plants. In this link you will know the Flora and fauna of the tropical jungle.
  • Low jungles: with vegetation adapted to the presence of numerous river courses, such as rivers and lagoons. Learn more about the lowland jungle, its fauna, flora and more characteristics here.
  • Floodplains and swamps: in which the vegetation shows different adaptations to survive and develop in flooded soils and coexist with other characteristic organisms of these ecosystems (such as amphibians).
  • Monsoon rainforests: In them there is a marked rainy season combined with a later very dry season, which is why much of the vegetation that inhabits it has developed periods of latency and / or less activity to survive the dry seasons.
  • Dry forests: As its name suggests, these forests are characterized by extreme drought that live for long periods of time, therefore having numerous species of deciduous trees, which better support and manage the lack of water in the ecosystem. Delve into this topic with this other post about the dry forest, its characteristics, flora and fauna.

Now that we know the different types of jungle that exist, it is useful to also know some examples from the jungles most striking and prominent on the planet, such as, for example, the Misionera forests (tropical rainy, located between Brazil, Argentina and Paraguay), Amazon jungle, Peruvian high forest, low jungle (or Peruvian region of Omagua, east of the Andes) , and the Lacandona jungle (in Mexico, with a great diversity of soils and topographies).

Characteristics of the rainforest ecosystem

The main characteristics of the rainforest are based on the different physical factors that define it as tropical forest, and they are:

  • High humidity and presence of large cumulus clouds.
  • Warm weather all year round
  • Frequent or intermittent periods of heavy rainfall
  • Clay soils, rich in various nutrients, such as magnesium, calcium and humus.
  • Among the main functions of the forests, the important ecological role they play in maintaining the global temperature of the planet stands out, as well as their action as sinks of C02 and emitters of oxygen, in addition to being natural ecosystems that protect the hydrographic basins in which they are located. located.

Flora of the jungle ecosystem

The jungle flora It is adapted to the characteristic climatic conditions that these surprising ecosystems present, including humidity and heat. For this reason, the trees and plants that grow in the jungles are characterized by the presence of oversized sheets to capture large amounts of light and water, as well as different adaptations to disperse its fruits and seeds with the help of the many jungle animals that deal with it. Some of the most abundant species in the jungle ecosystem vegetation are:

  • Palm trees (Arecaceae family)
  • Cedars (family Pinnaceae)
  • Lianas
  • Ferns (class Pterophyta)
  • Wild cane (Gynerium sagittatum)
  • Mahogany (family Meliaceae)
  • Orchids (family Orchidaceae)
  • Durian (Durio zibethinus)
  • Cocoa (Theobroma cacao)
  • Elephant ear (Xanthosoma sagittifolium)

Fauna of the jungle ecosystem

The jungle hides a rich and varied biodiversity of animal species. Many of them are poisonous species or camouflage specialists, since in an ecosystem with so much life and color, it is essential to have some survival strategy.

Insects, birds, elusive reptiles, moisture-loving amphibians, as well as mammals with different adaptations to the trees from which they obtain their food or after what they hide to hunt their prey, as well as numerous fish that inhabit the extensive rivers and lakes of these wonderful ecosystems. Some of the species of jungle animals most prominent are:

  • Jaguars (Panthera onca)
  • Capybaras (Hydrochaeris hydrochaeris)
  • Toucan tocoRamphastos touched)
  • Orinoco black caiman (Melanosuchus niger)
  • Piranhas (Family Serrasalmidae)
  • Poison arrow frogPhyllobates terribilis)
  • Green Anaconda (Eunectes murinus)
  • Lazy (Bradypus tridactylus)
  • Electric eel (Electrophorus electricus)
  • Blue-yellow Macaw (Ara ararauna)
  • Green Amazon (Amazonian amazon)

To expand this information, we recommend that you take a look at this article on What animals live in the rainforest.

If you want to read more articles similar to Jungle ecosystem and its characteristics, we recommend that you enter our Ecosystems category.

  • Alcaraz, F. (2012). Equatorial and tropical rainforests. University of Murcia, Spain.
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