Meaning of TEMPERATE FOREST in English


Figure 1: Worldwide distribution of temperate forests. vegetation type with a more or less continuous canopy of broad-leaved trees. Such forests occur between approximately 25 and 50 latitude in both hemispheres (seeFigure 1). Toward the polar regions they grade into boreal forests, which are dominated by evergreen conifers, so that mixed forests containing both deciduous and coniferous trees occupy intermediate areas. Temperate forests usually are classified into two main groups: deciduous and evergreen. Deciduous forests are found in regions of the Northern Hemisphere that have moist, warm summers and frosty wintersprimarily eastern North America, eastern Asia, and western Europe. In contrast, evergreen forestsexcepting boreal forests, which are covered in boreal foresttypically grow in areas with mild, nearly frost-free winters. They fall into two subcategoriesbroad-leaved forests and sclerophyllous forests. (Sclerophyllous vegetation has small, hard, thick leaves.) The former grow in regions that have reliably high, year-round rainfall; the latter occur in areas with lower, more erratic rainfall. Broad-leaved forests dominate the natural vegetation of New Zealand; they are significantly represented in South America, eastern Australia, southern China, Korea, and Japan; and they occur in less well-developed form in small areas of southeastern North America and southern Africa. Sclerophyllous forests occur particularly in Australia and in the Mediterranean region. Jeremy M.B. Smith Additional reading Broad descriptions of temperate forests can be found in J.D. Ovington (ed.), Temperate Broad-Leaved Evergreen Forests (1983); and E. Rhrig and B. Ulrich (eds.), Temperate Deciduous Forests (1991). J.R. Packham et al., Functional Ecology of Woodlands and Forests (1992), provides a general account of forest ecology, with particular reference to European deciduous forests. M. Numata (ed.), The Flora and Vegetation of Japan (1974), describes the temperate broadleaf evergreen and deciduous forests of East Asia. Jeremy M.B. Smith

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