Tropical Deciduous Forests – Where are they found?
Tropical Deciduous Forests in India are the most widespread. Commonly also known as Monsoon forests, in the world, they are found in the belt along the equator, between the tropics of Cancer and Capricorn as well as the humid subtropics.
Africa, India, South America, Central America and small islands in the Pacific are some of the places where they grow.
In India, they grow in the states of Madhya Pradesh Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Orissa, and parts of Maharashtra.
Tropical Deciduous Forests – Temperature and Weather
They experience an extremely humid climate (almost 80 to 90 percent) usually throughout the year, the temperature averaging to about 30-degree Celsius.
As seasons change, the colors of the leaves of the deciduous forest also change. During the cold winter months, water is generally not obtainable to keep the leaves of some plants alive.
Why are they named so?
Deciduous means “falling off at maturity” or “tending to fall off”, and it is characteristically used in order to refer to trees or shrubs that lose their leaves seasonally (most commonly during autumn) and to the flaking of other plant parts such as petals after flowering or a fruit when ripe.
What are Tropics?
The Tropic of Cancer and the Tropic of Capricorn makeup 40 percent of the surface of the Earth and hold an approximate 36 percent of the Earth’s landmass.
By the late 2030s, the world population habituating these areas is said to increase to 50 percent compared to the 40 percent in the year 2014.
Some features of Tropical Deciduous Forests in India
This type of forest is a biome and as previously stated, known for the falling and shedding of leaves during the autumn season.
In such forests, the vast majority of tree species as well as other vegetation that make up the forest shed their leaves during the cold winter and re-grow new leaves in the next spring season which is also known as the Monsoon Season.
This forest has a distinct ecosystem, understory growth as well as complex soil dynamics.
Although they are less in density, the tropical deciduous forests are the most widespread type of forest in India.
They receive abundant rainfall, ranging from 70 cm to 200 cm.
Wildlife in the Tropical Deciduous Forests
A wide diversity of mammals, birds, insects, and reptiles can be found in a deciduous forest biome. A biome can be described as a large, naturally occurring community of plants and animals inhabiting a major habitat.
In India, Lion, tiger, pig, deer, and elephant are some of the animals that make these forests their homes.
Outside India, in the United States, mammals that are generally found in a deciduous forest include bears, raccoons, squirrels, skunks, wood mice and even deer.
In North America, birds like broad-winged hawks, cardinals, snowy owls, and pileated woodpeckers are found in this biome.
Mammals in the North American moderate deciduous forests include white-tailed deer, raccoons, opossums, porcupines and red foxes.
Types of Tropical Deciduous Forests
This forest can be classified into two broad categories:
Moist Deciduous Forests
- They encompass a mixture of trees and grass.
- They receive moderate rainfall, averaging to 100 cm to 200 cm per year with the average temperature 27-degree Celcius and the humidity level approximating to a 65-75 percent.
- They grew plentifully in the Western Ghats (on the eastern sides), the Chota Nagpur plateau as well as the Shivalik mountain range.
- They are also found in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands as well as parts of West Bengal and Orissa.
- It is relatively easy to take advantage of these forests due to their high degree of gregariousness.
- A few species of trees include teak, sal, bamboo as well as rosewood.
- In this type of forest, open grass patches are often observed.
Dry Deciduous Forests
- They grow mainly in parts of Northern India as well as the southern areas of the Deccan Plateau.
- The rainfall averages to about 100 cm to 200 cm.
- They are also found in the plains of Bihar and Uttar Pradesh as well as the peninsular plateau.
- Dominant tree species include teak, sal, Peepal, and Neem.
- The animals that have made this type of forest their habitat include, lion, tiger, pig, deer, and elephant.
Soil found in Tropical Deciduous Forests, India
The nutrients present in the leaves are absorbed by the soil when they decompose. It is mainly due to this reason that the soil in this biome is very fertile. It is due to the fertility of the soil that large parts of the forest have been converted into agricultural areas.