Grasslands

Animals
Plants
Climate / Location
Health Issues

Climate Controls

Latitude is one of the climate controls because the grasslands are located all over the world, but they aren't too far from the equator. Land and water is one of the climate controls also because the grassland aren't located around the water too much. Mountains and highlands are a factor because there are mountains and hills all around the grassland areas. Geographic position and prevailing winds are a factor because there are winds blowing over the grasslands that come from all over the continent.

Seasonal Weather

Highly seasonal environments of temperate regions, they stretch out for thousands of miles primarily in middle of North America and Asian continents. More limited grassland areas roll across South America and have hot summers and cold winters. The rainfall is 15 to 30 inches a year, with frequent droughts, wildfires, and intense grazing. Various names are used around the world, for grasslands are known as prairies in North America, in Asia they are called steppes, in South America they are called pampas, and in South Africa they are called veldts. This biome bakes to a golden brown through long, hot, cricket-filled summers. When it freezes during the winter it is constantly shaped by winds that gather enormous speed across its vast open landscape.

Occasional wildfires help maintain this biome. Wildfires play an important role in keeping grasslands open and free of trees and shrubs.

The rainfall is between that of temperate forests and deserts, but it is not enough to support dense stands of trees.

Animals

Some animals that live in the grasslands are: deer, antelopes, african elephants, zebras, the monarch butterfly, horses, lions, and giraffes. Giraffes have very little enemies, they are tall, so they can get their food from trees. They have long legs, which makes it easy for them to run fast. The lions can run very fast on flat land because there is nothing to get in their way. Monarch butterflys are poisonous to their predators. Horses can run fast, they can buck, rear up, and trample what's trying to get them. The elephants are very big, they can trample what is trying to attack them, they also use their tusks to kill things.

Most of the animals that are found in the grasslands eat plants, except for the lion which eats other mammals. The plants that some of the animals eat are grass, leaves, and shrubs.

Plants

Plantlife in the grasslands of the world vary according to its location. The tallgrass prairie has fertile soil with a thick, black layer of organic matter. These types of prairies need to be burned or they will turn into a forest. The shortgrass prairie has much thinner soil that isn't very fertile at all. These kinds of prairies are located in dry areas and deserts, and if overgrazed, they will revert to thorny brush.

Grasslands in the United States are known as the "breadbasket of the world" because they provide a huge part of the world's food supply.

Health Issues

There are many wildfires in the grasslands, and if you live near the grasslands then you would be inhaling a lot of smoke. Another problem in the grasslands is that people used to use nerve gas there and now that they are building houses around there, some babies might be born with birth defects.

Over in Russia there are nuclear power plants which can really cause a lot of damage to people who live there. They can get very sick and babies will be born with defects.

Biome Index

Designed by Elizabeth McKenzie, Katie Settelmeyer, and Dan Reynolds.