Tropical and subtropical grasslands, savannas, and shrublands

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Extent of tropical and subtropical grasslands, savannas, and shrublands

Tropical and subtropical grasslands, savannas, and shrublands are terrestrial biomes dominated by grass and/or shrubs located in semi-arid to semi-humid climate regions of subtropical and tropical latitudes.

Description

Grassland is dominated by grass and other herbaceous plants. Savanna is grassland with scattered trees. Shrubland is dominated by woody or herbaceous shrubs.

Rainfall in tropical and subtropical grassland, savanna, and shrubland is between 500 and 1300 millimeters (20 to 50 inches) a year,[1] and can be highly seasonal, with the entire year's rainfall sometimes occurring within a couple of weeks.

Occurrence

Tropical and subtropical grasslands, savannas, and shrublands occur on all continents but Antarctica. They are widespread in Africa, and are also found all throughout South Asia, the northern parts of South America and Australia, and the southern United States.

African savannas occur between forest or woodland regions and grassland regions. The climate varies, with an average temperature of 27 °C with peaks of 30 °C in April and October, and between 300 and 1500 mm of rain per year. Flora includes:

  • Acacia (Tree)
    • Loses leaves in dry season to conserve moisture
    • Leafy canopy in rainy season (flattened by winds)
  • Baobab (Tree)
    • Stores water in trunk
    • Thick bark to protect it from fires in dry season
    • Long tap roots to reach underground moisture
    • Few leaves to reduce water loss through transpiration
  • Grass
    • Grow quickly to 3 or 4 meters in clumps
    • Shoots die in dry season leaving only roots
  • Low shrubs
    • Drought resistant
    • Small
    • Thorns not leaves

Ecoregions

Angolan Miombo woodlands Angola
Angolan Mopane woodlands Angola, Namibia
Ascension scrub and grasslands Ascension Island
Central Zambezian Miombo woodlands Angola, Burundi, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Malawi, Tanzania, Zambia
East Sudanian savanna Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Eritrea, Ethiopia South Sudan, Sudan, Uganda
Eastern Miombo woodlands Mozambique, Tanzania
Guinean forest-savanna mosaic Benin, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Ivory Coast, Nigeria, Senegal, Togo
Itigi-Sumbu thicket Tanzania, Zambia
Kalahari Acacia-Baikiaea woodlands Botswana, Namibia, South Africa, Zimbabwe
Mandara Plateau mosaic Cameroon, Nigeria
Northern Acacia-Commiphora bushlands and thickets Ethiopia, Kenya, South Sudan, Uganda
Northern Congolian forest-savanna mosaic Cameroon, Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of the Congo, South Sudan, Uganda
Sahelian Acacia savanna Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Chad, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, South Sudan, Sudan
Serengeti Kenya, Tanzania
Somali Acacia-Commiphora bushlands and thickets Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia
Southern Acacia-Commiphora bushlands and thickets Kenya, Tanzania
Southern Africa bushveld Botswana, South Africa, Zimbabwe
Southern Congolian forest-savanna mosaic Angola, Democratic Republic of the Congo
Southern Miombo woodlands Malawi, Mozambique, Zambia, Zimbabwe
Saint Helena scrub and woodlands Saint Helena
Victoria Basin forest-savanna mosaic Burundi, Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, South Sudan, Tanzania, Uganda
West Sudanian savanna Benin, Burkina Faso, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Ivory Coast, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal
Western Congolian forest-savanna mosaic Angola, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Republic of the Congo
Western Zambezian grasslands Angola, Zambia
Zambezian and Mopane woodlands Botswana, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Swaziland, Zambia, Zimbabwe
Zambezian Baikiaea woodlands Angola, Botswana, Namibia, Zambia, Zimbabwe
Arnhem Land tropical savanna Australia
Brigalow tropical savanna Australia
Cape York tropical savanna Australia
Carpentaria tropical savanna Australia
Einasleigh upland savanna Australia
Kimberley tropical savanna Australia
Mitchell grass downs Australia
Trans Fly savanna and grasslands Indonesia, Papua New Guinea
Victoria Plains tropical savanna Australia
Terai-Duar savanna and grasslands Bhutan, India, Nepal
Western Gulf coastal grasslands Mexico, United States
Aripo Savannas Trinidad
Beni savanna Bolivia
Campos rupestres Brazil
Cerrado Bolivia, Brazil, Paraguay
Clipperton Island shrub and grasslands Clipperton Island is an overseas territory of France
Córdoba montane savanna Argentina
Guianan savanna Brazil, Guyana, Venezuela
Gran Chaco Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay
Los Llanos Venezuela, Colombia
Uruguayan savanna Argentina, Brazil, Uruguay
Hawaiian tropical high shrublands Hawaiʻi
Hawaiian tropical low shrublands Hawaiʻi
Northwestern Hawaii scrub Hawaiʻi

See also

References

  1. ^ Jill Rutherford (2009). IB Environmental Systems & Societies: Course Companion. Oxford University Press. p. 43. ISBN 0199152276. 
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