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Our Rainforest By: Zane Gentry


Did you know that the Amazon Rainforest is home to over 1000 different plant and animal species? Well now you do! The Amazon Rainforest is our most important oxygen resource and is constantly being destroyed for its resources. The layers are the underground, home to underwater plants and fish, like piranhas. The next is the forests floor at the bottom of the rainforest this layer barley gets any sunlight so not too many plants grow down there. The Tree frog lives down here. The next is the understory the place that gets a little sunlight so plant leaves have to grow to huge proportions to get sunlight. An animal that lives here is the monkey. The next layer is the canopy and being above the others this layer has a lot of plants and food so it has a lot of life. An animal that lives here is the parrot. The final layer is the emergent layer and only the tips of the tallest trees reach into this layer. This layer is a very dangerous place for birds and monkeys becausethe eagle can swoop down and grab one of them whole. An animal that lives here is the eagle. The Amazon Rainforest is located in South America and is in Brazil, Peru, Venezuela, Columbia, Guyana, French Guyana, Suriname, and Bolivia. Its longitudinal and latitudinal range is 80w, 50w, 20s, 10n. This climate map will show its climate , or the average temperature for a place.

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Rainforest Animals The Amazon Rainforest is home to many animal species and other organisms, or any living thing. One of the animals is the three-striped poison dart frog. This poison dart frog has yellow stripes and is black (or yellow with black stripes, you decide.) Its habitat , or where it naturally lives, is in south and Central America in the understory in damp, dark places. Its only predator , or what eats it, is the snake, for it is immune to the poison dart frog’s poison. Its prey, or what it eats, consist of ants, spiders, flies, termites, small beetles, etc. The poison dart frog is a carnivore , or an organism that eats only meat. It has adapted , or any alteration in the structure or function of any organism, by creating a poison and bright colors to warn predators of its poison. Another organism is the piranha. The piranha has shining skin and very sharp teeth. It lives in the underground part of rainforests and in streams. We eat the piranha and so do water snakes, otters, and turtles. The piranha eats mainly other piranha, fish, birds, and lizards but will eat anything it can. The piranha has adapted to travel in schools so that any prey would be reduced in a matter of minutes. The piranha is, like the poison dart frog, a carnivore. But what happens to stuff when it dies? The answer is decomposers. A decomposer is an organism that eats other dead organisms, like plants and animals, in order to survive. You could call decomposers omnivores, or an organism that eats both plants and animals. Without decomposers we would have to live in a world where anything dead never goes away. That means road kill would pile up until we were walking on it. Decomposers may be disgusting but we need them to help keep our world clean and pretty.


Rainforest Plants As said in the first chapter, the Amazon Rainforest is home to many plant and animal species, such as the white trillium. The white trillium is a very useful plant becauseit is used to cure diseasessuch as fever. It can cure fever becauseits leaves have a special chemical in them. The only predators this producer or an organism that produces its own food using photosynthesis, or a processthrough which plants create food using the sun’s light, is people. Another plant in the rainforest is the cassava, a plant with many 5 pointed leaves. This plant lives in Mexico, Guatemala, and northern Brazil. The only predator it has is, like the white trillium, people. We may use its roots for food but its roots can be toxic if they are not prepared right. This is why I will never try to prepare it. The plants in the Amazon are very rare and are endangered. That is why people are trying to conserve , or the act of preventing the loss of a plant or other organism, these rare plant species. The rainforest is being destroyed in a process called deforestation , or the act of destroying the rainforest for its other resources. I get why we do it but what people don’t understand is that we lose the most valuable resource of them all-oxygen. Oxygen is what people and animals breathe in, and plants breathe out. Also we breathe out carbon dioxide, and plants breathe it in. So taking away plants takes away oxygen and adds to the carbon dioxide. Look at how that will affect the entire world. Stop deforestation! People are doing this by ecotourism , or tourism made for the ecosystem. But even ecotourism can hurt the environment as well becauseit can spill oil into the rivers. Ecotourism is also connected to conservation, because people doing ecotourism try to conserve the environment, or try to save the rainforest from deforestation. So ecotourism, conservation, and deforestation are all connected. Plants also drop foliage , or the green leaves of a plant, but it gets decomposed soon in the damp dark forest floor.


Tribes Just like there are many different plants and animals in the Amazon rainforest, there are also many indigenous-or originating in a particular region or country, tribes in the Amazon. One of these tribes is the Yanomami. This tribe lives in scattered villages and they live around a communal house. They use wood from the rainforest for their housing and eat from the rainforest. They also plant in places they have cleared from the rainforest. These farms provided them with fruits and vegetables that would be hard to find in the rainforest. This tribe, like all other tribes in the rainforest, has a unique culture , or development or improvement of the mind by education or training. Another tribe is the Tikuna tribe, also like the Yanomami, lives in scattered villages. They use the rainforest to make canoes so they may travel and trade. Their villages are small and are made up of wooden houses. They use the rainforest for the same things as the Yanomami but with the addition of spears for hunting, canoes as said before, and many other things. One thing these tribes have in common is that they are indigenous to the rainforest. They are also nomadic , or having the characteristics of nomads. Although they live in the rainforest, they also clear some of it. So they are technically contributing to deforestation. Both tribes hunt, and are very excellent hunters. They hunt monkeys, piranha, and many other fish. Hunting can be dangerous, especially when hunting piranha, if the hunter is not trained right. So as long as they are trained they will be able to hit a fish with excellent accuracy. Hunting a monkey can be hard because if they miss, their prey would be alerted and flee. Picking some nuts can be hard and dangerous as well. It can be because they have to climb very tall trees and if they fall they could be hurt and even killed in the fall. But they barely ever fall becausethey have learned how to do it when they are young.


Extra Facts The rainforest is very helpful and very interesting. But we are losing it every day from our greedy needs. We should not use it for furniture and fire wood. We should use it for food, medicine, and other natural needs. But people can’t see that we need oxygen and medicine more than furniture and outdoor heat. We live in the 21st century people! Come on use this technology not for destruction of importance! So use other materials for non-important things like furniture and use it for medication and food! We are being greedy and destroying an important resource to our existence. So go out there and stop all of this deforestation before it destroys us and the rest of the world! We will not exist on this world without the rainforests! So stop the madnessand help the trees! Here are some ways to stop this madness: Do homework-that is possible to do-on the computer, try to use all of a piece of paper, use ecofriendly bottles and anything else, don’t waste books that have already been read-give it o an orphanage. We can do many other things not listed here to conserve the rainforest, but we need as much help as we can get. So let’s help the rainforest so we can live here for as long as we can! The rainforest is very amazing but 14%of the world used to be rainforest, now only 6% of the world is rainforest. Destroying the Amazon will destroy a lot of oxygen…and add to the carbon dioxide. Savethe Amazon rainforest and all the other rainforests to save the world from an air depleted world! This is what we have done to the Amazon Rainforest.


Citations www.blueplanetbiomes.org www.crystallinks.com www.dictionary.com www.enchantedlearning.com www.library.thinkquest.org www.mongabay.com www.rainforestconcern.org/tour/rfc_guide.htm www.raintree.com www.srl.caltech.edu www.worldatlasbook www.worldbookstudent.com


We have done a lot to the rainforest, both good things and bad things. This land cover map is a perfect example of what I am talking about.


Zane G. - Block 1