Tropical Forests


Terms & Definitions

  • adaptation
    a behavior or body structure which makes an organism more successful in its habitat
  • biodiversity
    the variety of life forms, their ecological roles and their genetic variations
  • communities
    integrated groups of species inhabiting a given area that influence one another's distribution, abundance, and evolution
  • conservation
    using habitats, resources, animals and plants wisely, so as to save them for future generations
  • deciduous
    bushes and trees that shed their leaves at the end of a growing season
  • decomposition
    the act of breaking down or decaying into basic elements and compounds
  • ecosystem
    a natural arrangement of living organisms interacting within their physical environment to create a stable system
  • endangered
    in danger of extinction throughout (all or a significant portion of) its range if current trends affecting its population continue
  • foliage
    the leaves of plants and trees
  • food chains
    the transfer of food energy from producer (plant) to consumer (animal) to decomposer (insect, fungus, etc.)
  • forests
    any dense growth of trees and other plants that covers large areas
  • habitats
    any arrangement of space, food, water and shelter suitable for the survival and reproduction of an organism
  • humus
    the organic part of soil formed from decaying plant and animal matter
  • natural resource
    a material source of wealth that occurs in a natural state
  • photosynthesis
    the production of sugars and starches from simple chemicals by using light energy
  • primate
    the mammalian order that contains prosimians (lemurs), monkeys, apes, and humans
  • transpiration
    the elimination of excess water through pores in plant tissues