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Geography

Biomes

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Ecosystemsecosystem: A community of animals, plants and microorganisms, together with the habitat where they live. can be small-scale, covering a small area (such as a pond) or large-scale covering a large area (such as a tropical rainforest).

The world is divided up into ten major ecosystems. These large-scale ecosystems are called biomes [biome: A large-scale ecosystem. ].

What are the world’s major biomes?

Rainforest

Rainforest in Hawaii

Rainforest in Hawaii - photo courtesy of Sarah Camp

Biomes are large-scale ecosystems defined by abiotic [abiotic: Non-living elements of an ecosystem, such as climate, temperature, water, and soil type. ] factors. These are:

  • climate
  • relief [relief: The height of the ground above sea level. ]
  • geology [geology: The study of the structure of the Earth. ]
  • soils
  • vegetation

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Back to Ecosystems - the living world index

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