Natural Regions Based on the Latitudinal Extent (MH 7)

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Division of the world into natural regions

The division of the world into natural regions is as under:
1. The tropical region includes the equatorial region, the tropical grasslands, the tropical monsoon region and tropical deserts.
2. The sub-tropical region includes the Mediterranean region and the China type region.
3. The temperate region includes the cool temperate west coast region, the temperate grasslands and the temperate deserts.
4. The polar region includes the tundra and the taiga region.

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Equatorial region

It includes the Amazon lowlands of South America, the Congo basin and the Guinea coast in equatorial Africa, south-east Asian islands, and some islands in the Caribbean sea. It experiences uniformly high temperature almost throughout the year. The rainfall is heavy and well distributed throughout the year. Malaria, yellow fever and other tropical diseases are widespread. The human settlements are small and scattered. A migratory system of agriculture is practised in sparsely populated areas. Vegetation such as trees, creepers, bushes, ferns, orchids grows here. The main trees found here are mahogany, rosewood, ebony, rubber, cane, etc.

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Tropical Grasslands

The tropical grasslands (also called Savanna) are found in the interior of the continents in the tropical belt. The tropical grasslands are found mainly in South America, Australia and Africa. There are distinct wet and dry seasons. The mean temperature is high throughout the year i.e., between 24and 32. Coarse tall grasses are the typical vegetation of the tropical grasslands. The Savanna vegetation can also be classified as trees, shrubs and grasses. The main trees found in this region are baobab, eucalyptus, acacia, tamarind, etc. The people in tropical grasslands are engaged in various occupations such as cattle rearing, hunting, agriculture and trading. 

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Tropical Deserts

This region lies in the subtropical high pressure belt and includes some of the driest areas on the Earth. The Northern hemisphere includes the Afro-Asian deserts of Thar, Arabia and Sahara. In North America, the tropical deserts cover California, Arizona and Mexico states of USA. The Southern hemisphere includes the Atacama desert, the Namib and Kalahari desert and the Great Australian Desert. It has extremes of hot and cold climate . The average annual rainfall is generally less than 25 cm. Not much vegetation grows here due to shortage of water. The main trees or bushes found in this region are acacia, cactus, babul, etc. Mules, gazelles, camels, snakes, lizards, are the wildlife species found in these deserts. In the harsh, inhospitable conditions in the deserts, the inhabitants have to struggle against an environment deficient in water, food and other means of livelihood.

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Temperate Grasslands

This type of climate is found around the Caspian Sea in Western Asia, Russia ans Ukraine are the main countries located here. Summers are warm and winters are cold. Annual rainfall is low (25-75 cm) and occurs in summers. The Steppes have short grasses and low bushes because of the low rainfall. Horses, antelopes, mules and wolves are found in this region. Wheat is the main crop grown in this region. Other crops are maize, barley, rye, etc.

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Taiga Region

The taiga region occurs as a broad belt in Europe, Asia and North America. Central Siberian region experiences this kind of climate. It has short, cool summers and long cold winters. Precipitation occurs in summers is moderate which helps in the growth of trees. Trees such as spruce, fir and pine occur in large numbers in the coniferous forests. Animals with fur such as fox, sable and mink are commonly found here.

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Tundra Regions

This type of climate prevails in Northern Siberia along the northern coast of Asia. It has long and very cold winters with temperatures reaching below freezing point. Summers are short and cool. The permanently frozen subsoil does not support trees. Moss and lichen grow here as they can withstand freezing temperature. The extremely cold climatic conditions do not encourage permanent settlements. Reindeer, foxes, polar bears, hairy seals and walruses are some of the animals found in this extremely cold region.