Major Ecosystems of the World

A relatively large and distinct terrestrial area characterized by climate, soil, plants, and animals regardless where it’s located.
Tundra/Arctic Tundra
Occurs in extreme northern latitudes wherever the snow melts seasonally.
Permanently frozen ground that varies in depth and thickness.
Taiga/Boreal Forest
A region of coniferous forests in the Northern Hemisphere; located just south of the Tundra in northern parts of North American and Eurasia.
Temperate Deciduous Forest
A forest biome that occurs in temperate areas where annual precipitation ranges from about 75 cm to 125 cm.
Temperate Graasland
A grassland characterized by hot summers, cold winters, and less rainfall then is found in a temperate deciduous forest biome.
A biome with a Mediterranean climate (mild, moist winters and hot, dry summers); characterized by small-leaved evergreen shrubs and small plants.
A fragile ecosystem in which lack of precipitation limits plant growth.
Thermal Stratification
The marked layering (separation into warm and cold layers) of temperate lakes during the summer.
A marked and abrupt temperature transition in temperate lakes between warm surface water and cold deeper water.