Boreal Forest


Boreal Forest
Boreal Forest


Introduction


The boreal forest biomes of the World are mainly found in Alaska, Canada, and Russia. The nicknames of the boreal forest in Russia is the Taiga (which means dense woodlands of spruce), and the "Spruce Moose" in Alaska. The taiPrecipitationga is usually found between 70 and 45 degrees latitude, and the trees cover 11% of the Earth's surface. Boreal forests mainly consist of coniferous trees, which means they have no protective coverings on their seeds, and are like cones, and have needles for leaves. Also, Coniferous trees do not shed there leaves for the changing seasons.

(Day, Trevor. Biomes of the Earth. preface-200)
(Lisowski, Marylin and Jones Linda C. Environmental Science. pg 64)
R_tarandus_map.gif
Boreal Forest Biomes around the World

Climate


There are two main seasons in the boreal forest. The summers are short and cool, with less than a hundred frost-free days. During the summer, the growing season is only three months long. The winters are long severe, with daily temperatures usually below zero. The Alaskan boreal forest has an average temperture of 45 degrees fahrenheit.

(Day, Trevor. Biomes of the Earth. preface-200)
(Hernricks, Ann, "Alaska." The New Book of Knowledge, pg144-147)
(Lisowski, Marylin and Jones Linda C. Environmental Science. pg 64)
russiaprecipitation3.JPG
A GRAPH of the precipitation of the Russian Taiga.

(Bowman, John S. "Russia" The New Book of Knowledge, pg 361-362)

Precipitation



In the boreal forest of Russia, otherwise known as the Taiga, the biome recieves up to 120 inches a year. Precipitation comes in the form of rain and snow, but usually rain. In Alaska, the boreal forest recieves about 94 inches a year in high areas, and up to double that amount in lower areas. Winters have snow, and summers have rain that melts the snow.

(Day, Trevor. Biomes of the Earth. preface-200)
(Bowman, John S. "Russia" The New Book of Knowledge, pg 361-362)
Author Unknown. Glencoe Online Science Test.
ISB 202 Global Changes: notes - Energy Flow and Trophic Structure (1/18/2007).
boreal_graph.jpg
GRAPH of temperatures in a Boreal Forest.

ISB 202 Global Changes: notes - Energy Flow and Trophic Structure (1/18/2007).

Sunlight



Sunlight in Boreal forests varies from season to season. In the winter the sun shines much less, causing snow to build up and less evaporation. In the summer, the sun and rain (rain has a temperature of above freezing) produces enough heat to melt most of the snow. The Boreal is covered with coniferous trees that need sunlight to make their own food. This process is called photosynthesis.

sunlight.jpg
Author unknown. Taiga or Boreal forests.concentrated
(Jenkins Dylan, "Forests and Forestry." The New Book of Knowledge. pg 374-375)

Trees



The freezing point of water is 32 degrees farenheit, but some Taiga trees can tolerate air temperatures of -76 degrees farenheit and still not freeze. During the winter trees called larches lose water and make sugar and other nutrients become concentrated in the trees tissues. This lowers the freezing point of the water left in the tree. This helps the tree because ice crystals in the tissues would damage the tree. There are two types of Taiga, "dark" and "light." Dense boreal forests are aften called "dark" taiga. "Dark" Taiga trees have dark leaves to absorb more light, spruce and fir trees tend to dominate. Taiga with little nutrients are "light" taiga, which contains conifers with lighter leaves. Ground fires are frequent in "light" taiga.

(Day, Trevor. Biomes of the Earth. all pages)

light_taiga.jpg
A "light" taiga


Author Unkown. Flora and Vegetation.

Animals

The ecosystem in a boreal forest is usually supported by the seeds made by producers (coniferous trees). Animals who eat the seeds are red squirrels, insects, finches, crossbills, and chickadees. Some animals eat trees bark, like snow shoe hares, moose, and beavers. Then there are the carnivores that eat these animal. The carnivores are wolves, bears, great horned owls, and lynxes. A scavenger of the taiga is a wolverine. Insects in the boreal forest are gnats, blackflies, and mosquitoes. Reptiles and amphibians are the Siberian Salamander, the European Viper, and the lacertid lizard. Animals in boreal forests around the world are similar because Asia used to be connected to Alaska, so species could pass from Alaska to the Russian taiga. So, the only difference of the animals is their name.

(Day, Trevor. Biomes of the Earth. preface-200)
(Hernricks, Ann, "Alaska." The New Book of Knowledge, pg144-147)
(Lisowski, Marylin and Jones Linda C. Environmental Science. pg 64)
grey-wolf-snow.jpg
(Wolf Picture, Wolf Desktop Wallpaper, Free Wallpapers, Download, Animals-National Geographic.)

Grey Wolf



Scientific Name: Canis Lupis
Length of wolf, from tip of nose to end of tail: 41/2-6 1/2 feet
Weight of adult: 60-120 pounds
Habitat: Forests (boreal) and Tundra
Information: The Grey Wolf is largest wild dog in North America. It is a social pack animal, and the pack obeys a strict heirachry that decides when each pack member hunts and eats. It also decides who breeds, but everyone in a pack helps to protect the young. The pack is lead by an alpha male and female, who help the pack take down prey like deer and moose. Smaller prey for the pack maybe fish, birds, insects, and small mammals. A whole pack may eat 20 pounds each in one sitting. The territory of one pack maybe over hundreds of square miles. A pack will ambush their prey, becuase they are smarter than to waste access energy whne hunting. The pack communicates with posture, scents, and howls. Sometimes, a pack may seperate during the summer when food is plentiful, and rejoin in the winter when food is harder to find.
Click to hear a Grey Wolf:
http://animals.nationalgeographic.com/animals/wallpaper/grey-wolf-snow_image.html

(Day, Trevor. Biomes of the Earth. preface-200)
("Gray Wolf." pg 52)
(Wolf Picture, Wolf Desktop Wallpaper, Free Wallpapers, Download, Animals-National Geographic.)
Foodchain4.JPG
The Food Web a Gray Wolf of the Boreal Forest. (Aves drew this!)



Threats to Boreal Forests


Today, boreal forests around the world are being threatened. Dangers are acid rain, overhunting, mining, and cutting trees for paper products. Acid rain and paper companies reduce the number of trees, while overhunting and mining decrease animal numbers by deaths or lack of habitat.

(Day, Trevor. Biomes of the Earth. preface-200)

Bears


In the the biome of the boreal forest there are two two types of bears the American Black Bear an the Brown Beat (or the Grizzly Bear). Some places in Canada these two bears habitats meet.


The American Black Bears
The American Black Bears are found only in North America, mostly in Canada and their habitat is in a forest. The physical appearence of a Black Bears of Western Canada are usually black with a brown muzzle and chest, while in Eastern Canada the Black Bears are more of a brown with a lighter brown muzzle and chest. Adult Black Bear males grow to be 80-90 cm standing and weigh from 150-300 kg. The average life span of Black Bears are 20-25 years in the wild. They are omnivores and their diet consists of fruits, nuts, insects, honey, salmon, small mammals and carrion. Black Bears live their lives alone until they mate.
external image black%20bear.jpg
Animal Actors Black bear
http://amazinganimalproductions.com/animals/lc/images/black%20bear.jpg

The Brown Bear


The Brown Bear or Grizzly bear are found in a variety of habitats forests, meadows, and the tundra. In North America, they are found in western Canada, Alaska, Wyoming, Montana, Idaho, and Washington. Male Brown Bears are 135-390 kg and weigh and stands 1.5 m from foot to shoulder. Usually Grizzly Bears are darkish brown but can vary from very light cream to black. Like Black Bears they live solitary lives unless if they are mothers or cubs. Also they are omnivores that eat grasses, sedges, roots, berries, insects, fish, carrion and small and large mammals as their diet.
(Paul Ward and Suzanne Kynaston, Bears of the World, pages 55-61)

An American Black Bear
An American Black Bear

Brown bear
http://image.guim.co.uk/Guardian/environment/gallery/2007/nov/12/wildlife/Brown-bear-C-Ivan-Seryodkin-4854.jpg

Taiga Video




Totems and Totem poles


For people living on the taiga, or in other Boreal forests, animals are sacred. Some native tribes of Siberia, northwest Canada, and Alaska use the wolf as their totem animal. If a wolf was attacking the tribes caribou, it was, forbidden to kill the wolf. All in all, totem poles not only show a families status it also wards off bad sprits.

Works Cited


toneeeeeeeeee. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V3sfzSRsceA.October 06, 2007
http://www.wildernessclassroom.com/www/schoolhouse/boreal_library/index.htm

Lisowski, Marylin and Jones Linda C. "Boreal Forest Biomes." Environmental Science. Boston: Person Education Inc., 2007.

"Gray Wolf." The Encyclopedia of North American Animals. 2004 ed.

Jenkins Dylan, "Forests and Forestry." The New Book of Knowledge. 2003 ed.

Day, Trevor. Biomes of the Earth. Illustrated by Richard Garratt. New York: Chesea House, 2006.

Bowman, John S. "Russia" The New Book of Knowledge, 2004 ed.

Hernricks, Ann, "Alaska." The New Book of Knowledge, 2003 ed.

Ward, Paul and Kynaston, Suzanne. Bears of the World. Cassel Illustrated. New York: Cassell Illustrated, 1999 & 1995.

Author Unknown. ISB 202 Global Changes: notes - Energy Flow and Trophic Structure (1/18/2007). January 18, 2007. Febuary 23,
2008 http://www.msu.edu/course/isb/202/ebertmay/notes/snotes/01_18_07_ecosystems.html.

Author Unkown. Wolf Picture, Wolf Desktop Wallpaper, Free Wallpapers, Download, Animals-National Geographic. Date Unknown. National Geographic. March 4, 2008 http://animals.nationalgeographic.com/animals/wallpaper/grey-wolf-snow_image.html.

Author Unknown. Ontario Ministry of Natrual Resorces. Date Unknown. Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources. 3/7/08, http://www.mnr.gov.on.ca/MNR/sorr/wolves_status.html

Author Unkown. Flora and Vegetation. 2005. March 5, 2008 http://wwwuser.gwdg.de/~ubns/Khoninuga/flora_and_vegetation.htm.