Climate and Natural Vegetation

Unit 6: OUR EARTH

Climate and Natural Vegetation

Objective             :     To explain climate and its effects on vegetation and lifestyle.

 

Introduction:

Climate is an average weather of a place measured over many years. It refers to the temperature of a place, rain or snow the place receives. The climate of a place is affected by various factors like Distance from Sea, Latitude and Altitude.

 

The area near the sea and ocean are affected by cool sea breezes and the inner part of the continent does not experience it. Thus, the climate near the sea or ocean is cool whereas the climate in the inner part of the continent is hot.

 

Similarly, near the equator, the rays of the sun are straight. The sunrays are slanting in the northwards or southwards to the equator. So, the equatorial region is hot and other places are cooler but the polar region is very cold due to extremely slanting rays of the sun.

 

Altitude also affects the climate. The higher the altitude, lower the temperature. After every 160-165m altitude, 10C temperature decreases.

 

Climate affects the landforms, soil types, vegetation and lifestyle. The kinds of clothes we wear; food we eat, houses we live in and as a whole our all activities in life are influenced by the type of climate we have in our place. For example, people living in cold region wear warm woolen clothes whereas the people in the hot region wear light cotton clothes. If the place has hot and wet type of climate, the people adopt agriculture but in the dry and cold places animal husbandry is the main occupation.

 

Climate greatly influences the type of vegetation. If the place has hot and wet climate, evergreen tropical vegetation is grown and in tundra climate very few plants like Lichens and Mosses grow. For example: we can’t grow rhododendron in the terai part due to hot climate and coconut in the Himalayan region due to excessive cold climate.

 

Group Activities:

  • What do you mean by climate? Differentiate between weather and climate.
  • Explain how distance from sea affects climate of a place with a suitable figure.
  • Explain how altitude affects climate of a place with a suitable figure.
  • Explain how latitude affects climate of a place with a suitable figure.

 

Presentation: All groups present their work in 10 minutes

 

Assignment:

  • Explain how climate affects the natural vegetation and lifestyle with suitable examples.

Source: Climate of the world, Atlas book, newspapers, effects of climate on vegetation and lifestyle from the internet, teachers, neighbors and family members.

 

Presentation for the next day: Group A

  • A short presentation on the factors affecting climate of a place and the effects of climate on vegetation and lifestyle

 

 

Climatic regions of the World: Hot/ tropical climatic zone

Objective               :     To introduce the types of climate in hot climatic region.

 

Introduction:

A climatic region is a big area throughout which the condition of relief, temperature, rainfall, soil, vegetation and human activities are more or less same.  On the basis of common characteristics, the world can be divided into 4 major climatic regions each having distinct temperature and rainfall pattern.

 

The climatic regions of the world are:

  • Equatorial hot climatic region
  • Warm temperature climatic region
  • Cool temperature climatic region
  • Cold temperature climatic region

 

The equatorial hot region extends from 00 to 300 North and South of the equator. This region has 4 major types of climate. They are:

 

  1. Equatorial Climate:

Location:

This climate is experienced between 50 to 100 North and South of the equator i.e. lowlands of Amazon, Zaire, Malaysia and East Indies.

 

Characteristics:

  • High temperature throughout the year.
  • Rainfall is very heavy and distributed equally round the year.
  • Receives convectional rainfall often if the afternoon.
  • High humidity throughout the year.
  • No change in seasons.
  • Very hot and wet nature of climate helps to grow tropical rainforest or Selvas.

 

  1. Tropical Grassland (Savanna) Climate:

Location:

This climate is experienced between 50 to 200 North and South of the equator i.e. Sudan, Veld of South Africa, Grassland of Northern Australia, Guiana Highlands of South America and Campos of Brazil.

 

Characteristics:

  • Summers are very hot and winters are warm.
  • Convectional rainfall in summers and winters are generally dry.
  • Rainfall is uneven.
  • Trade wind blows here.
  • The climate favors to grow tall grasses with scattered trees.
  • The trees are umbrella shaped due to the strong winds.
  • Varieties of animals are found in this region so, it is called the zoo of the world.

 

Such grasslands are called differently in different places like Lianos in Venezuala, Veld in South Africa, Campos in Brazil, Savanna in whole of Africa, Steppe grassland in Europe and Asia, Prairries in North America and Pampas in Argentina.

 

  1. Hot Desert Climate:

Location:

This climate is experienced in the western side of the continent between 200 to 300 North and South of the equator i.e. Sahara and Kalahari deserts of Africa, Arabian, Iranian and Thar deserts of Asia, Australian deserts, Atacama desert of South America and Californian and Mexican deserts in North America.

 

Characteristics:

  • Very hot and dry climate.
  • Rainfall is scanty.
  • Vegetation is poor.
  • Thorny plants are found here to store water and prevent its loss due to evaporation. They are deep and long rooted in order to find the water like cactus and thorny bushes.
  • Desert fox and Kangaroo rats live her because desert fox fulfills the need of water from the blood of other animals and Kangaroo rats never drink and get the moisture by eating available plants and seeds.

 

  1. Tropical Monsoon Climate:

Location:

This climate is experienced between 100 to 300 North and South of the equator i.e. South and South-East Asia, Central America, West Indies, North-East Australia, the Philippines and Central Brazil.

 

Characteristics:

  • The wind changes the direction with the change of season like winter and summer monsoon.
  • Rainfall is uneven like Cherapunji, Aasam has about 1250 cm average annual rainfall whereas Pokhara, Nepal has about 400 cm average annual rainfall.
  • Natural vegetation differs from place to place like tropical rainforest and deciduous monsoon forest.
  • The common animals found in this climatic region are leopard, deer, elephant etc.
  • The climate is suitable for paddy production.

 

Group Activities:

  • Present the following data in a Climograph:
Months Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sept Oct Nov Dec
Temperature (0C) 7 16 21 27 33 34 35 33 30 20 10 5
Rainfall (cm) 3 4 2 4 10 19 30 27 12 5 2 1
  • Explain the characteristics of tropical monsoon climate with its location.
  • Explain the characteristics of equatorial climate with its location.
  • Explain the characteristics of Savanna climate with its location.

 

Presentation: All groups present their work in 10 minutes

 

Assignment:

  • Insert the places where 4 types of climate of the hot climatic zones are found in the map of the world.

Source: Climate of the world, Atlas book, teachers, friends and family members.

 

Presentation for the next day: Group B

  • A short presentation on the location of each type of climate in hot climatic zone.
  • The group members should draw an outline map of Nepal in the white board of the class and do their presentation.

 

Climatic regions of the World: warm Temperature climatic zone

Objective               :     To introduce the types of climate in warm temperature climatic region.

 

Introduction:

Warm temperature zone extends from 300 to 450 North and South of the equator. It has 4 major types of climate:

  1. Mediterranean Climate:

Location:

This climate is experienced between 300 and 450 North and South of the equator i.e. near the Mediterranean Sea in Europe, South-West Africa, Central Chile, Central California and island of New-Zealand.

 

Characteristics:

  • Summers are bright, sunny, hot and dry because of dry off-shore winds and the winters are mild and moist because of wet westerly winds.
  • Evergreen woodland is grown well.
  • The climate is favourable for human settlement and fruit production.
  • The plants and trees of Mediterranean region have hard, oily and glossy leaves to avoid excessive transpiration during the dry summers.

 

  1. China type of Climate:

Location:

This climate is experienced between 250 to 400 North and South of the equator i.e. Eastern China, Southern Japan, South-eastern USA , Africa and Australia, Central part of Uruguay and Argentina.

 

Characteristics:

  • Summers are hot and humid and winters are mild.
  • Temperature is very low in winter due to local winds.
  • Rainfall is well distributed all the year round although it is more in summers and less in winters.
  • Natural vegetation is og both types-coniferous and deciduous.
  • The climate is good for paddy production.

 

  1. The Temperate Continental (Steppe) Climate:

Location:

This climate is experienced between 300 to 500 North and South of the equator i.e. Inner parts of the continents like prairies of North America, Steppes of Eurasia, Downs of Murrey-Darling river basins and Pampas of South America.

 

Characteristics:

  • Summers are very hot and winters are very cold.
  • These lands are called the extreme lands due to the great range of temperature in the summers and winters.
  • Maximum rainfall occurs in summers.
  • Vegetation is of short grass type.
  • Wheat production is very famous in this climatic region so it is called the store-house of food grains in the world.

 

  1. The Temperate Desert Climate:

Location:

This climate is experienced between 250 to 400 North and South of the equator in the inner parts of the continents i.e. Tibet in Asia, basins surrounded by Rockies in North America and Patagonia desert in South America.

 

Characteristics:

  • The temperature is extreme due to the location in the inner parts of the continents.
  • Poor rainfall due to its location in rain-shadow area.
  • Cactus with spreading roots, stunted bushes and scrubs are grown here.
  • Vast area is covered by sand only.
  • Agriculture is adopted by the people in the areas close to the rivers.

 

Group Activities:

  • Explain the characteristics of Mediterranean climate with its location.
  • Explain the characteristics of China type of climate with its location.
  • Explain the characteristics of temperate continental climate with its location.
  • Explain the characteristics of temperate desert climate with its location.

 

Presentation: All groups present their work in 10 minutes

 

Assignment:

  • Insert the places where 4 types of climate of Warm Temperature climatic zone are found in the map of the world.

Source: Climate of the world, Atlas book, teachers, friends and family members.

 

Presentation for the next day: Group C

  • A short presentation on the location of each type of climate in Warm Temperature climatic zone.
  • The group members should draw an outline map of Nepal in the white board of the class and do their presentation.

 

 

Climatic regions of the World: Cool Temperature Climatic Zone

Objective               :     To introduce the types of climate in cool temperature climatic region.

 

Introduction:

Cool temperature zone extends from 450 to 600 North and South of the equator. It has 3 major types of climate:

  1. British Type of Climate:

Location:

This climate is experienced between 450 and 600 North and South of the equator i.e. North-west Europe, Western Canada, Southern Chile, Tasmania and southern island of New-Zealand.

 

Characteristics:

  • It is an equable climate which has warm winters.
  • Adequate rainfall throughout the year.
  • Broad leaved deciduous forest is grown well because of cool damp condition.
  • People can remain energetic round the year because of cool climate.
  • Agriculture, cattle rearing, fishing and industries are the main occupation.

 

  1. Eastern Margin/St. Lawrence/Laurentian Climate:

Location:

This climate is experienced between 250 and 500 North and South of the equator on the eastern sides of the continents i.e. North China, Monchuria, Korea, Eastern Canada and New England states of USA.

 

Characteristics:

  • It is cooler than British type and warmer than Siberian type of climate.
  • It has cold-dry winters and warm-wet summers.
  • Precipitation is fairly distributed throughout the year. It is in the form of rain in summers and snow in winters.
  • Rainfall is either convectional or cyclonic.
  • Consists mixed vegetation of coniferous and deciduous forest.
  • The people are energetic all the year round because of cool nature of climate.
  • Agriculture, cattle rearing, fishing, industries and mining are the main occupation.

 

  1. Siberian Climate:

Location:

This climate is experienced between 550 and 700 North of the equator i.e. Canada, Northern Europe and Siberia of Asia.

 

Characteristics:

  • Summers are just warm and short and winters are long and very cold.
  • Precipitation is variable. It falls in the form of rain in summers and snow in winters.
  • This region receives cyclonic rain. The vegetation consists of coniferous forest which is called Tiaga in Asia.
  • Lumbering is the main occupation.
  • People are nomadic in nature.

 

Group Activities:

  • Explain the characteristics of British type of climate with its location.
  • Explain the characteristics of Eastern Margin climate with its location.
  • Explain the characteristics of Siberian climate with its location.
  • List out the possible reasons why most people of Siberian region are involved in lumbering?

 

Presentation: All groups present their work in 10 minutes

 

Assignment:

  • Insert the places where 3 types of climate of Cool Temperature climatic zone are found in the map of the world.

Source: Climate of the world, Atlas book, teachers, friends and family members.

 

Presentation for the next day: Group D

  • A short presentation on the location of each type of climate in Cool Temperature climatic zone.
  • The group members should draw an outline map of Nepal in the white board of the class and do their presentation.

 

 

Climatic regions of the World: Cold Temperature climatic zone

Objective             :     To introduce the types of climate in cold temperature climatic region.

 

Introduction:

Cold temperature zone extends from 600 to 900 North and South of the equator. It has 2 major types of climate:

  1. Tundra and Ice Capped Climate:

Location:

The Tundra climate is experienced between 600 and 900 North and the Ice Capped climate is experienced between 600 and 900 South of the equator. Ice capped region is permanently covered with snow. Northern most part of Canada, Alaska, North-west Scandinavia, Greenland, Iceland and northern most parts of Siberia are the places where Tundra climate is found. The Ice capped climate is found in Southern Antarctica.

 

Characteristics:

  • Summers are cool and winters are severely cold in Tundra region but in Ice Capped region, summers are continuous day and winters are continuous night.
  • Very few plants like bushes, marsh, grasses, lichens mosses etc. grow in Tundra region but nothing in the Ice Capped region.
  • Life is very difficult in the cold region.
  • Inuit race of people or Eskimos live in Igloo in winters and Tupik in Summers but human settlement is not possible in the Ice Capped region.
  • The people are nomadic in nature.
  • Hunting and fishing are the main occupation in Tundra but nothing in the Ice Capped region.

 

We find another type of climate in the high mountains due to the altitude which is called the mountain type of climate. This climate is not categorized under any climatic region of the world. Higher the altitude, lower the temperature. We find the difference of 10C temperature when we climb up or down by 160 to 165 m altitude. Thus, the high mountains even in the warm zone have cold climate. The mountain type of climate is found in the region of young fold mountains of the Himalayas, the Alps, The Rockies and the Andes.

 

Group Activities:

  • Explain the characteristics of Tundra climate with its location.
  • Explain the characteristics of Ice Capped climate with its location.
  • Life of the people in Tundra region is very difficult and they are nomadic. Why? Explain.
  • If you belonged to Inuit race and living in Tundra Region, what different occupations would you adopt there for your survival?

 

Presentation: All groups present their work in 10 minutes

 

Assignment:

  • Insert the places where two types of climate of Cold Temperature climatic zone are found in the map of the world.

Source: Climate of the world, Atlas book, teachers, friends and family members.

 

Presentation for the next day: Group A

  • A short presentation on the location of each type of climate in Cold Temperature climatic zone.
  • The group members should draw an outline map of Nepal in the white board of the class and do their presentation.

 

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