Habitats for the Living

(from the depths of the ocean floors to the highest mountains, from dry deserts to grasslands, and the warm and wet tropical areas; all provide each form of life its preferred habitat)

The various areas of the world make it possible to support a diversity of animal and plant life

A significant composition known as biodiversity allows many different kinds of animals and plants to live in the same habitat.

You may see the largest collection of word entries for habitats or dwelling places for animals and plants by clicking on this link.

Biosphere of Habitats
The zone at and near the earth's surface in which all living things are located:

Ranging from submicroscopic viruses to giant sequoia trees, this horde of organisms has adapted to almost every kind of environment, from hot springs to glacial ice.

Such habitats involve the interactions of plants and animals with various parts of the earth and are involved in many important earth processes.

Coal and petroleum have been formed from the remains of prehistoric organisms.

Bacteria played an essential role in the development of certain types of iron ore.

Finally, the study of fossils has provided a great deal of information about earth's history and the development of life.

—This section was compiled from a presentation in
The Planet We Live On: Illustrated Encyclopedia of the Earth Sciences;
Cornelius S. Hurlbut, Jr., Editor; Harry N. Abrams, Inc., Publishers;
New York; 1976, page 94.

Also see "The Development and Explanations of Life and Its Characteristics for additional information related to this subject.

coniferous-forest habitat (s) (noun), coniferous-forest habitats (pl)
Forest trees that thrive in areas where very few other species of trees can survive in cold and in mountain ranges: "The coniferous-forest habitats include redwoods, spruces, and firs."

"Coniferous trees produce cones and don't lose their needle-leaves in the winter and such habitats support a diversity of animal and other plants."

coral-reef habitat (s) (noun), coral-reef habitats (pl)
Considered to be the "rain forests" of ocean life because of the great varieties of species that are supported there: "The coral-reef habitats have come into existence as a result of the skeletons of many marine organisms in the shallow, sunlit tropical waters."
desert habitat (s) (noun), desert habitats (pl)
An excessive lack of rain and soils restrict the growth of plants: "Desert habitats have been created because they don't have the means to sustain much in the way of resources for biodiversity."

"It is estimated that approximately one-third of the Earth's land areas consist of desert habitats."

"The earth's largest desert habitat is the African Sahara."

grassland habitat (s) (noun), grassland habitats (pl)
A living space that is dominated by grasses and similar vegetation, typically fairly flat and may be inhabited by large and small animals: "Some temperate grassland habitats are without trees but most of them have very fertile soils."

"Savanna grassland habitats often are more like open woodland with some trees scattered in small groups and woody plants much smaller than trees."

mountain habitat (s) (noun), mountain habitats (pl)
Living spaces for plants and animals as part of high places which rise as high as five and a half miles (nine kilometers) above sea level and have several different environments: "Each height can have several mountain habitats from temperate woodland on up to arctic conditions as climate changes take place when going up to higher altitudes."
ocean habitat (s) (noun), ocean habitats (pl)
A place where ecosystems are found at all levels, from the sunlit surface areas down to the deepest existence of life under water: "The ocean habitats cover about two-thirds of the Earth and support many kinds of life forms from the microscopic planktons to the blue whale, which is the biggest living mammal."
polar-region habitat (s) (noun), polar-region habitats (pl)
Geographical areas that are dominated by great amounts of snow and ice and also consist of vast, dry areas of polar desert because of very small amounts of rainfall: "The polar-region habitats include the Arctic and Antarctic zones with 24-hour periods of daylight in the summer and continuous darkness in the winter."

"Both polar regions provide animal life; including fish and other sea life for the polar bears, seals, penguins, etc."

river and wetland habitat (s) (noun), river and wetland habitats (pl)
Various areas that are saturated with water; either seasonally or permanently and that consist of landscapes that have dense vegetation: "River and wetland habitats have a significant variety and quantity of animals and plants living in them."
temperate-forest habitat (s) (noun), temperate-forest habitats (pl)
An environment that is between the tropics and the polar areas which are not subject to extreme temperatures: "The conditions of the temperate-forest habitats are determined by both the tropical and the polar air masses which provide a great deal of biodiversity."

"The extent of the temperate-forest habitats has been considerably diminished by people as they cut down so many trees."

tropical forest (s) (noun), tropical forests (pl)
The richest wildlife habitat on earth: "The tropical forests are among the hottest and humid areas and they are usually supporting a diversity of lush botanical and zoological life; typically closest to the equator."

"There are multitudes of important ecosystems in the tropical forests; however, they are also vulnerable to destruction by humans."

—A compilation of information from
Smithsonian Natural History, The Ultimate Visual Guide to Everything on Earth;
published by DK Publishing; New York; 2010; pages 18 & 19.

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