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World Biomes
Subtropical evergreen forest
• In the middle latitudes, the prevailing winds carry
moisture-laden air masses over the west coasts of the
continents, which receive substantial rainfall in
consequence. In much the same manner, the
subtropical east coasts of the continents are kept wet
by the trade winds. In these regions, the combination
of ample precipitation and comparatively mild
temperatures produces dense forests in which
evergreen species, both broadleaf and coniferous,
• Is created by warm, moist air flowing out of the
subtropical high pressure cells onto the eastern sides
of the continents.
• Has abundant summer rainfall, mainly convectional
with an occasional tropical cyclone (monsoons).
• Receives winter precipitation from wave cyclones.
• Annual precipitation shows a significant variation
between 1,000 mm and 3,000 mm
• Temperature ranges from 0°C in winter to 20°C In
Distribution of biome
• The most extensive region of subtropical evergreen
forests is in East Asia, where rain falls throughout the
year and summers are hot. These forests occupy a
large transitional zone between the deciduous forests
of northern China and Japan and the tropical
evergreen forests of Southeast Asia.
• The corresponding forests in North America are
confined to the Atlantic coastal plain of the southeastern United States, where evergreen oaks and
magnolias flourish in the maritime climate.
• Far to the south of the Equator, significant subtropical
evergreen forests grow in south-eastern Australia,
New Zealand, and the coast and highlands of southern
• Soils are depleted by high rainfall as nutrients are
washed out of the soil.
• Soils have a subsurface horizon in which clays have
accumulated, often with strong yellowish or reddish
colours resulting from the presence of Fe oxides.
• Because of their acidity and relatively low quantities of
plant-available Ca, Mg, and K, soils are poorly suited for
continuous agriculture without the use of fertilizer and
lime. With these inputs, however, these soils can be very
Plants I
• Some of subtropical forests are sufficiently wet to be
called rainforests. As in the more familiar rainforests of
the tropics, many of the trees reach enormous size,
and epiphytes are common. Because more light
penetrates the canopy, however, the vegetation of the
understorey and forest floor is better developed than in
the tropics.
Scribbly gum eucalyptus
White stringybark eucalyptus
Long-leaf pine
• Forest animals have highly developed hearing, and
many are adapted for vertical movement through the
Squirrel glider
Red-eyed tree frog
King parrot
Yellow-tailed black-cockatoo
Palm civet
Red-necked tanager
red-billed curassow
four-eyed opossum
Gopher tortoise
White-tailed deer
• Urbanisation, industrialisation, logging, agricultural
expansion, and associated road building threaten this
globally important region of biological diversity.
• Habitat loss, hunting, and the wildlife trade threaten
many species.
Rice paddy