Perth Academy. Geography Department

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1 Perth Academy Geography Department Climatic Zones Equatorial Rainforest

2 EQUATORIAL RAINFOREST What is climate? What is a climatic zone? 1 There are 2 main natural or climatic regions studied in National 4 and 5 Geography. They are: 1. Tundra or Cold Desert 2. Equatorial Rainforest We will look at the climate, the natural vegetation, the indigenous people and how life is changing in each region. This unit covers the Equatorial Rainforest. Location of the Rainforest By the end of this section I will be able to: * Locate main climate regions on a world map * Describe where the Rainforest is found Firstly we need to know where in the world we find these different climate zones.

3 Location of the Rainforest 2 Stick your map of the world into your jotter and then shade it in to clearly show the location of the Equatorial Rainforest. Make sure you include a title, key and the main lines of latitude. Use an atlas to name at least three countries that have rainforest. : Revision Copy and complete the following sentences into your jotter, using an atlas to help you if needed. Equatorial Rainforest This region is found along the where it is always hot and wet. It is found in the following continents, and.

4 Climate Graphs By the end of this section I will: * know which elements make up a climate graph * be able to describe a climate graph Each of the natural regions has a very distinct and varied climate. It is important that we know these differences and can identify them on maps and from analysing climate graphs. A climate graph has a line graph showing temperature and a bar graph showing rainfall for each month of the year plotted together. The same scale must be used for all graphs so that an easy comparison can be made between every region. 3 The figures below show the average temperature and the rainfall for each month in the equatorial rainforest. In the Tundra unit, we learned how to draw and describe climate graphs. Use the figures below to describe the rainforest climate. Equatorial Rainforest Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Temperature C Rainfall mm Remember to describe means to write what something is like

5 Homework Exam style question. Using the information on the graph that you are given, describe the climate of that area. 4 The Equatorial Rainforest Climate By the end of this section I will be able to: * demonstrate a detailed knowledge of the rainforest climate * understand why the rainforest has so much rain The equatorial climate is hot and wet all year round. The annual rainfall is high (over 2500mm), as it usually rains every day. Temperatures are almost the same all year, around 28 C. The temperature range is usually between 2-3 C. There are no seasons and the humidity is high in these regions. The weather in Britain changes from day to day, however, in equatorial areas almost every day is exactly the same. It is fine in the morning, cloudy and wet in the afternoon, with clear skies again in the evening. Every day is about the same length, with 12 hours of daylight and 12 hours of darkness. Convectional Rainfall The roots of trees and plants absorb water from the soil. As temperatures increase during the day, water evaporates from the soil and plants leaves into the atmosphere. This water vapour cools, condenses and forms clouds. The water droplets become bigger and bigger and the clouds become saturated. They eventually burst bringing the next days rain. This is known as convectional rainfall. The whole process is repeated daily and the cycle continues. Why all the rain?

6 In your jotters, copy and complete the diagram below showing why the Rainforest gets so much rain. Annotate the diagram with the following points: 1. The sun rises high by midday 2. The sun heats up the ground 3. Air next to the ground is heated 4. Water evaporates from the ground and trees 5. Warm air rises 6. Air cools and condensation occurs 7. White, cumulus clouds form 8. Cumulonimbus storm clouds form 9. Heavy rain and thunderstorms in early evening 5

7 The Equatorial Rainforest Ecosystem By the end of this section I will: be able to label the structure of the rainforest understand the effect the removal of trees has on the ecosystem 6 Read pages 110 and 111 of Key Geography for GCSE and complete the following: Put a heading of The Characteristics of Equatorial Rainforests Copy the summary from page 111 into your notes Answer Activities 1-3 from page 111 in sentences For question 1 make sure that you sketch diagram D before answering the question The Nutrient Cycle Despite its dense and lush appearance, the rainforest is a fragile environment. The soil in the rainforest is actually very infertile and relies of the rotting of dead leaves on the forest floor to allow a layer of rich, fertile soil called humus to develop. Without this very little would be able to grow. Recently, large areas of forest have been cleared for development (deforestation), which has permanently destroyed the ecosystem and large numbers of plants and animals have been lost forever.

8 7 Copy the diagrams above into your notes using the heading The Nutrient Cycle. Using the labels on your diagram, write this paragraph in your jotter and fill in the missing words, underlining them to show their importance. Dead leaves and plant material are broken down by the, wet and the large number of insects on the forest floor. The substance that is made, called, provides nutrients that are easily by plant roots. However, nutrients are rapidly used up by the number of plants competing for survival. The nutrient cycle is unbroken as long as (the removal of the trees) does not occur. However, if the protective of trees is removed, the soil quickly becomes. An absence of means that humus cannot be made to replace the in the soil. Heavy is also a problem as it quickly nutrients out of the soil making it infertile. Word Bank climate absorbed canopy rainfall leaches quickly deforestation warm humus leaves nutrients infertile

9 Use and Misuse of the Land By the end of this section I will be able to: describe how indigenous people live in the rainforest show a detailed knowledge of the threats to this lifestyle Traditional Way of Life: Shifting Cultivation Native tribes e.g. the Kayapo in the Amazon rainforest have lived in the world s rainforests for thousands of years without irreparably damaging it. They practise a basic form of agriculture called 'shifting cultivation'. It is a traditional and sustainable method of farming which involves producing just enough food for survival. Along with other features of their culture and traditional way of life, shifting cultivation is under threat from large-scale clearance of the rainforests. 8 The main characteristics of Shifting Cultivation are: 'Slash and burn' agriculture is a subsistence farming system practised by the Kayapo Amerindian tribe in the Amazon rainforest in Brazil. A small area of land (approx. 1 hectare) is cleared using stone axes and machetes. These clearings are called chagras. Larger trees and those which bear fruit are left to aid regeneration. The vegetation is burned, providing ash which is used as a natural fertiliser. Crops such as manioc and yams are planted using a long pointed digging stick. The diet is supplemented by hunting, fishing and gathering fruit. For a few years the soil remains fertile for the tribe to grow crops. After 2-3 years when the soil's fertility is exhausted, crops no longer grow well. The soil has been leached - nutrients have been washed out of the top soil. Soil has also been eroded and washed into rivers. The tribe have to move on and clear another small area of forest to begin the whole process again. The original area is regenerated over a period of years, as it takes nutrients and seeds from surrounding vegetation. Although it destroys some rainforest land, it is sustainable as it is small-scale and vegetation grows back in time.

10 9 Read pages 100 and 101 of New Wider World and complete the following: Put a heading of Shifting Cultivation Answer question 7a) and b) from page 105 in sentences Copy the diagram above into your notes. Medical Research Many rainforest plants have valuable medicinal properties. More than 60% of medicines sold in chemists shops contain ingredients derived from rainforest vegetation. Plants are removed for scientific and medical research which may provide new food sources as well as medicines for life threatening diseases e.g. cancer, many of which still remain undiscovered. Watch Tribe The Penan and answer the questions on the sheet provided.

11 Misuse of the Equatorial Rainforest By the end of this section I will be able to: give the meaning of deforestation describe and explain why the rainforest is being cleared describe and explain the effects of deforestation give detailed solutions to deforestation The world s equatorial rainforests are being destroyed (deforestation) for many reasons such as new roads e.g. Trans-Amazonian Highway in Brazil; to mine resources such as gold an iron ore; industries such as logging, plantations, cattle ranching and hydro-electric power (HEP); in addition to new settlement for rapidly growing populations. 10 Read pages 118 and 119 of Key Geography for GCSE and complete the following: Put a heading of The Causes of Deforestation Answer Activities 1-3 from page 119 in sentences

12 Effects of Deforestation Deforestation is the large scale removal of trees from forested land. The world is in great danger of losing its rainforests with more than half having been lost in the last 50 years. The Amazon rainforest is most at risk every year more and more of it is burnt down and cleared. The rainforest is millions of years old and has many areas that are unexplored. Many modern medicines originate from rainforest plants and it is hoped that there may be other cures e.g. for cancer in the unexplored regions of the rainforest. If the forest is destroyed then we may never know. 11 Soil fertility with the increase of rain reaching the ground, many nutrients have been washed out of the soil. This has made the soil less fertile. Some farms have had to be abandoned. Local climate change with fewer trees there is less evaporation and less moisture in the air. In areas such as the North-East of Brazil this has reduced rainfall and increased drought. Ecosystem the loss of forest has changed the ecosystem. Large numbers of plants and animals have already been destroyed. Some of the plants used to make medicines have disappeared. World climate change the burning of the forest releases carbon dioxide into the air. This has caused global warming and an increase in world temperatures. Amerindians there has been a huge reduction of people from local tribes living in the area. These numbers are down from around 6 million to the present number of just 200,000. Soil erosion the clearing of trees means that there is no canopy to protect the soil from heavy rain or plant roots to bind it together. Soil is washed away and if washed into rivers causes flooding. Traditional culture many Amerindians have been forced off their land to make way for new developments. In many cases their traditional culture and way of life have been destroyed.

13 Developments such as mining, logging and cattle ranching have resulted in a loss of land for native people. Contact with companies from developed countries has led to a loss of their traditional way of life. Tribes have been influenced by new technologies such as rifles and radios. Some tribes have been forced into reservations for their own protection against new developments by foreign companies. Native people have contracted western diseases such as flu and measles which can kill them as they have no immunity to these diseases. The traditional farming system is being altered as there is less land to move in to in order to practise shifting cultivation. 12 Use the information on page 11 and the Key Geography for GCSE textbook to make notes in your jotter using the seven headings in bold on the diagram. The heading for your work is Effects of Deforestation. Management Strategies Many developing countries such as Borneo, Brazil and Kenya need to exploit their rainforest resources in order to generate income to help them become more developed. Many of them now realise that use of the forest must be done in a manageable or sustainable way. To ensure the rainforest is conserved for future generations, sustainable development is vital for its survival. Management strategies designed to do this include: 1. National Parks Areas of rainforest can be designated as a national park by governments passing laws to protect them from commercial developments. 2. Agro-forestry This involves growing trees and crops at the same time to allow crops the benefit of being sheltered by the trees. It also prevents soil erosion as trees roots bind the soil. Crops benefit from the nutrients provided by the humus from leaves.

14 3. Sustainable forestry schemes Experts calculate how many trees can be cut down without causing irreparable damage to an area. Trees can be cut down as long as the same number of trees is replanted. 4. Selective logging Trees are only cut down when they reach a specific height. This helps to protect young trees and aids regeneration where deforestation has occurred. 5. Afforestation 13 This involves planting more trees to sustain the canopy of trees. 6. Satellite monitoring Satellites are used to take aerial photographs of the areas of the rainforest to check that activities taking place are legal. 7. Education This involves training people who are involved in the exploitation of the rainforest to understand the consequences of their actions. 8. Eco-tourism This can help to protect areas of the rainforest as tourists money is invested in conservation programs. Create a mind map using the information above to show ways in which the rainforest is conserved for future generations. Use the title Management of the Rainforest. Include information from each heading as well as the heading itself e.g. Management of the Rainforest Afforestation Plant more trees to sustain the canopy

15 Summary Summary Rainforest Information Gap Activity Follow the instructions on the powerpoint to complete the questions given which will help you to build up a good picture of the structure of the rainforest, plant and animal adaptations, the importance of the rainforest and reasons why this is being destroyed. 14 Just for Fun! Rainforest Word Jumble In your groups, jumble up the letters in the rainforest words that you have been given When told to, write your jumbled words up on the board The other groups have to guess what the words spell. Whichever, group gets it first gets a point. After the first group s words are correctly un-jumbled, the next group gets up to write their words. The group with the most points wins.

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