What are biomes?
Biomes are areas of our planet with similar climates, landscapes, animals and plants. What lives in each biome depends on:
- how warm or cold it is
- how dry or wet it is
- how fertile the soil is
The animals in a biome depend upon plants for food. The plants in a biome often also depend upon the animals for spreading pollen and seeds so that new plants can grow. So both plants and animals rely on each other to stay alive.
Types of biome
Tropical rainforests are hot and wet all year round. They are home to half of all the different types of plants and animals on the planet.
Deserts are hot and dry all year round. The only things that grow are cacti and small shrubs because the soil is shallow and rocky. Animals come out at dusk when it is cooler.
The savannah is hot all year round with a long, dry season. Only grasses and shrubs grow here but it is home to lots of different types of animals such as elephants, zebras and wildebeest.
Woodlands are habitats where the main plants found are trees, but mosses, ferns and lichen can also be found. The climate is warm and mild, with more rain falling in the winter than the summer.
Grasslands are areas of land that are vast and open, with grasses being the main plants. The largest grasslands are found in East Africa. Zebras, giraffes, elephants and rhinos can all be found living in grasslands.
The tundra is the coldest of all the biomes. There is very little rain or snow and the temperatures are freezing. Winters are long and summers are short. Part of the soil is frozen all year round, although the top part defrosts in summer and plants such as mosses can grow.