Animal Of The Rainforest

Tropical Rainforests

Rainforests are forests that receive more than 78 inches of rain per year. Tropical rainforests are found around the Equator (0° North or South), mostly just north or south; mainly between the Tropic Of Cancer (23.5° North) and the Tropic Of Capricorn (23.5° South).

World Biome Map
Biomes are large land areas that share characteristics that make them different from other areas


Biome Map

Copyright © 1995-8 The Evergreen Project, Inc.

Mingouli Rainforest, Gabon, Africa
The Mingouli rainforest grows along the Ivindo river banks between Makokou and Ovan, in the North-East of Gabon, Africa.
Photo courtesy/copyright Marc ONA ESSANGUI, Pdt Brainforest,

**Where are Tropical Rainforests**

Mainly in the Americas, Africa, and Asia.

Eastern Mexico through northern Central America and down the flank of eastern Central America.

Part of the Pacific side of Central America. Osa Peninsula in southern Costa Rica. Darien region of Panama.

Western coastal South America through Columbia (Choco) and into Ecuador.

There are some in the Caribbean, the largest in Puerto Rico and Trinidad. Cuba has some tropical rainforests remaining.

On the eastern side of the Andes Mountains lies the Amazon Rainforest, the largest in the world. Includes parts or all of Brazil (half of the Amazon), Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Venezuela, Guyana, Surinam, and French Guiana.

The Indo-Malaysian Pacific forests extending from Sumatra in the west to New Guinea in the east, and into mainland Asia in the north to include the forests of Thailand, Burma, Laos, Assam, Bhutan, and Nepal.

Western peninsular India, Sri Lanka, eastern Vietnam, Cambodia, western Thailand, southern China, Hainan, Java, Borneo, other Indonesian Islands, the Philippines, New Hebrides, New Caldonia, Solomon Islands, Fiji and Samoa.

Parts of Queensland and northern New South Wales in Australia.

In Africa the Zaire (Congo) River Basin. It includes the Ituri Forest, and next to the Amazon is the world's largest contiguous tropical rainforest.

Also in Africa, tropical rainforests are in Gabon, the Republic of the Congo, and the Central African Republic. Coastal West Africa from Angola north to Guinea.

Still in Africa the Virunga volcano range bordering Zaire, Rwanda, and Uganda. Parts of Tanzania and Kenya.

Islands of Mauritius, Reunion, Rodriquez, and the Seychelles in the Indian Ocean. Eastern portion of Madagascar.

Parts of Hawaii.

Click here to see a ranked list of countries and how much tropical rainforest they have (from World Resource Institute)

Newman, A. (1991) Tropical Rainforest. Eddison Sadd Editions, New York.

**Rainforest Facts**

While they cover only about 6% of the earth's surface, rainforests support over half the world's animal, insect, and wild plant life.

One quarter of today's pharmaceuticals come from Tropical Rainforest plants.

Rainforests control climate by influencing wind, rainfall, humidity and temperature. They recycle water, oxygen and carbon which reduces soil erosion, flooding and air pollution.

We have destroyed half of all the world's Rain Forests. They are disappearing at a rate of about 100 acres every two or three minutes.

Tropical Rain Forests produce oxygen and consume carbon dioxide.

Slashing and burning of rainforests contributes a great deal to the global warming and the greenhouse effect.

In just four square miles of some Rainforests you might find over 750 species of trees, 1500 types of flowering plants, 125 different kinds of mammals, 400 different birds, 100 reptiles, 65 amphibians, and a staggering number of insects.

**Ten Reasons To Save Rainforests**

Many scientists think that destroying tropical rainforests could drastically change world weather patterns.

Tropical rainforests contain more than 50% of all plant and animal species in the world. If the rainforests are destroyed, most of these plant and animal species will be lost forever. Scientists predict this loss of species diversity would have serious consequences for the health of the planet.

Scientists have studied only a small percentage of the plants and animals that live in rainforests. Every day we are losing species that could potentially provide people with new products and medicines, such as gasoline substitutes and cancer cures.

Tropical rainforests are exotic and unique wild places where amazing and strange plants and animals live. They have long inspired artists, scientists, and others. Loss of these incredibly diverse forests would be a serious loss for people everywhere.

As rainforests disappear, so will the cultural traditions of many native peoples. These indigenous people's have a right to live how and where they want.

As native rainforest peoples die or are forced to move, the world will lose their knowledge of rainforest plants, animals, cycles, and other information that has taken hundreds of years to gather. This information about what's in the rainforest and how "it works" could help scientists develop new crops, farming techniques that don't hurt the forest, and medicines and other products.

Many species around the world, including many North American songbirds that migrate to Latin America, depend on the tropics for survival. As more and more rainforest habitats disappear, the loss will affect species outside the tropics.

People who live outside of tropical rainforests depend on products from rainforests, including valuable hardwoods such as mahogany, bamboo, and foods such as bananas, nuts, and coffee. As the destruction continues, these products could become very scarce and expensive.

The loss of thousands of acres of tropical rainforests is already causing serious local problems, including increased soil erosion and water pollution. As more deforestation occurs, the problems will increase.

People don't have the right to destroy the world's rainforests and other habitats for their own purposes.

Taken from Jason X Curriculum

Check These Out

Layers Of The Rainforest

A very simple and well done one page site on the basic rainforest layers (strata). Very nice for young children.

Strata (layers) Of The Rainforest

Beautiful for younger children. The layers of the rainforest and who lives in each. Simple to use, by the Science Museum Of Minnesota.

All About Rainforests

An excellent overview of rainforests. (what is, strata, animals, where, rainfall, temperature, soil, importance, who lives there). Very nice for young children.

About Rainforests

A very informative overview of tropical rainforests by the Rainforest Action Network. Perfect for upper primary children and beyond.


Excellent for middle grades and up. Very readable. Talks about types of tropical forests, value of tropical forests, deforestation, possible solutions, and more.

Rainforest Facts

An outstanding overview on rainforests and their importance. Special attention to the Amazon Rainforest. Perfect for upper elementary and way beyond.

How Rainforests Work

An excellent overview of rainforests. Very suitable for upper elementary grades and beyond.

Virtual Rainforest, OnLine Rainforest Tour

Outstanding for younger children. A fun, factual, visual tour of the rainforest by Gerald R. Urquhart.

Science In The Rainforest

Beautiful overview of rainforests for young people by PBS. Some topics include layers of rainforest, plants, pollination, native peoples, facts, products, deforestation, and more. Simple to read and use.

Passport To The Rainforest

Follow in Darwin's footsteps, courtesy of PASSPORT TO KNOWLEDGE, to the heart of our planet's largest rainforest, guided by some of the world's leading biologists. Explore "the greatest expression of life" so far discovered in all the Universe, via a project that uses video, real-time interactions, the Internet and hands-on science activities - PASSPORT TO THE RAINFOREST. Excellent for teachers and kids of all ages.

An outstanding site for kids. All kind of links, news, and information; animals, plants, importance, native peoples, destruction and much much more.

Rainforests, Diversity and Destruction

Great overview of the rainforest biome. What are rainforests, where are they located, facts, and destruction of the rainforest.

Cloud Forest Alive

Cloud forests are rare and unique ecosystems. An excellent site with facts, figures, photos, and more.

Amazon Rainforest

Very colorful, informational tour of rainforests and the Amazon by Nature Safaris, an eco-tourism company.

"Logging And Poaching Bring Silence Down On Africa's Great Forests"

An article by Paul Salopek which talks about threats to the Congo Basin Rainforest in Africa. Easy to read, excellent.

Lacandon Rainforest - The last remaining tropical rainforest in North America

Fate of Lacandon Jungle - North America's Last Tropical Rainforest

A very nice overview of the Lacandon Rainforest in Mexico.

An excellent article on current problems in the Lacandon Rainforest.

Deforestation/Destruction Page

Our photos and lots of links to sites on deforestation/destruction.

John Kricher: A Neotropical Companion: Chapter 2. Rainforest Structure and Diversity

A NEOTROPICAL COMPANION: An Introduction to the Animals, Plants, & Ecosystems of the New World Tropics (second edition, revised and expanded) by John Kricher is published by Princeton University Press and copyrighted, (c) 1997, by Princeton University Press. All rights reserved. Chapter 2 takes you inside the Peruvian Amazon. Middle School and way beyond. Excellent.

The Flight of the Harpy Eagle: the Crisis in the Ecuadorian Amazon

In the words of a native Ecuadorian living in the Amazon.

Nomads of the Dawn - Penan of the Borneo Rainforest

Extracts from the book of the same name. A look at the Penan, who live in the Borneo Rainforest. Excellent info and photos. Book by Wade Davis, Ian Mackenzie, and Shane Kennedy.

Sarawak Peoples Campaign - The Penan of Sarawak

The Penan are one of the few remaining nomadic peoples of the rainforest. This site gives you an overview of their lives and the problems they currently face. Outstanding.

Flooded Forest-

An excellent site from the Wildlife Conservation Society highlighting areas that exist due to the seasonal flooding of the Amazon River. Mamirauá, the Pantanal, and Amanã are detailed. Overview of their efforts and an excellent photo gallery of Amazon animals and people who live there. Great for young people to learn about this unique Amazon Rainforest environment.

Amazon Nature Tours - Focus On Brazil

Brazil is a vast country with several distinctly different biomes. The guides of Focus Tours Inc., give an excellent overview of the biomes of Brazil, with mention of the some of the animals found in each.


The Daintree is a small area of coastal lowland rainforest, and is notable for being home to the highest diversity of plant families in Australia. In the Daintree, there are more plant groups with primitive characteristics than in any other tropical forest in the world. The region is regarded by biologists as a living museum of plants originating in the Gondwana supercontinent.

Cat Tien National Park - Vietnam

The rainforest of Cat Tien National Park is one of the last remaining lowland jungles in Vietnam. Cat Tien is situated 150 km north of Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon). Excellent site for young children to learn about one of the few rainforests in Vietnam to survive the Vietnam War.

Tropical Forests on the World Heritage List

UNESCO's World Heritage mission is to: encourage countries to sign the Convention and ensure the protection of their own natural and cultural heritage; encourage States Parties to the Convention to nominate sites within their national territory for inclusion on the World Heritage List. Detailed information (climate, rainfall, fauna, flora, etc.) of the tropical sites on the World Heritage List.


Journey with us into the lost world of Madagascar on this latest NOVA/PBS Online Adventure ("live" from May 18 to June 8, 2000). In two little-visited regions -- a cave-riddled canyonland and a mountainous rain forest -- follow the efforts of scientists trying to capture and study a catlike predator known as the fossa and an extremely rare lemur called the silky sifaka.

Madagascar Biodiversity and Conservation

This web site is based on photographs and experiences from travels in five areas of rainforest, two areas of dry tropical forest and two parts of the spiny desert. We were in Madagascar at the end of the dry season in November and December of 1993. David Parks did most of the trip organization and photography, especially the close-up work; Larry Barnes did the audio recording and the rest of the photography. Beautiful site.

Nouabalé-Ndoki National Park

Situated in the north of the Republic of Congo (Congo-Brazzaville), the Nouabalé-Ndoki National Park was created in 1993 to conserve, in its natural state, one of the last examples of an untouched wilderness in the world. The Nouabalé-Ndoki National Park is one of the largest parks in the forested regions of central-west Africa, and contains almost 2 % of all Congo's forests. Great for elementary kids and above.

A Lonely Battle For The Rainforests Of Assam

A tiny environmental activist group is waging a lonely battle to save the last, surviving patches of a rainforest in the northeastern Indian state of Assam. The few patches of the rainforest in the state's Tinsukia and Dibrugarh districts are the only ones left in this region of the Himalayan foothills.

Rengah Sarawak

This web site contains stories and information about and related to the various struggles in Sarawak, one of the two East Malaysian States in the northern part of the island of Borneo. Rengah Sarawak is the result of a combined efforts by several Sarawak non-government organisations (NGOs) and communities to bring views and information on and about the people's struggles directly to the internet community and beyond. Excellent news and photos (upper elementary and way beyond).

Last Frontier Forests

Frontier forests are large, ecologically intact, and relatively undisturbed natural forests. This site (from the World Resources Institute) is packed with information, statistics, maps and much more. An outstanding reference.

Click here for climograph of Macapa, Brazil in the Amazon Rainforest
Climograph shows average monthly rainfall and temperature

**Maps And Country Information**

Perry-Castaneda Library Map Collection

Click here to add this tool to your site.

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Animals Of The Rainforest/Ron Kalasinskas, All rights reserved.
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