Characteristics of equatorial tropical rain forests

These are found in the tropics, equatorial regions like in the Congo Basin, Amazon basin. Caribbean islands, pacific islands in countries like DRC, Gabon, Argentina.

The following are characteristics of equatorial tropical rainforests:

  • They have buttress roots to support the heavy and tall trees.
  • Arranged in layers known as canopies like the top, middle and lower layer.
  •  They have broad or big leaves to help in transpiration.
  • They are ever green because the areas receive rainfall throughout the year. No shading leaves
  •  They have tall trees growing to a height of 30-50 metres because of fertile soils, wet climates in order to get sunlight.
  • They are dense, thick and concentrated, luxuriant because of fertile soils and wet climate.
  • The species are mixed up (not in pure stand) because they grow according to natural conditions.
  • They have small plants like mosses and algae which grow on stems, branches because of wet conditions.
  • They have hard wood species, mvule, mahogany, ebony, musizi, rose wood, iron wood.
  • They have a long gestation period of 30-50 years because they are hardwood species.
  • They have limited or no undergrowth because of dense canopies.
  • They have climbing plants like lianas, cucumber, epiphytes.
  • The trees have no wax, but they have gum, glue and rubber.
  • They have very many species making them good for tourism and for environmental protection.
  • They grow according to physical and natural conditions like wet climate, fertile soils, relief like lowlands, highlands and Mt. slopes.
  • They have smooth barks (stems and branches).

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