Published on June 30, 2008
Slide 1: RAINFORESTS Slide 2: Table of Contents Where are the Tropical Rainforests? The Layers of a Rainforest More About a Rainforest’s Layers Food Supply Our Greatest Pharmacies Shrinking Rainforests Deforestation and Its Effects Extinction The People of the Rainforest Rainforests for Tomorrow Credits Rainforests’ Facts Where are the Tropical Rainforests? : Where are the Tropical Rainforests? Central America The Amazon Africa Southern Asia Australasia (Australia, New Zealand, New Guinea) Rainforests’ Facts : Often described as the Earth’s lungs, the rainforests generate much of the oxygen that we breathe. Rainforests affect local weather conditions by creating rainfall and moderating temperatures. About one-third of the carbon dioxide generated by humans is absorbed by and locked up in the Earth’s rainforests. They cover only about 6 percent of the Earth’s surface. However, they are home to more biodiversity than any other ecosystem. Rainforests’ Facts Rainforests protect against flood, drought, and erosion. They help regulate the planet's weather cycles by circulating wind and water vapor outward from the tropics. They help maintain the water cycle. The Layers of a Rainforest : The Layers of a Rainforest EMERGENT LAYER CANOPY LAYER FOREST FLOOR UNDERSTORY LAYER More About : More About CANOPY LAYER This is the primary layer of the forest. Many animals including snakes, toucans, and tree frogs live in this layer because food is abundant. UNDERSTORY LAYER The plants in this layer seldom grow to 12 feet but their leaves are large to reach the sunlight. Many animals live in here including jaguars, red-eye tree frogs, and leopards. There’s also a large concentration of insects. FOREST FLOOR Hardly any sunlight reaches the forest floor. Giant anteaters and the largest animals live in this layer. EMERGENT LAYER The emergent trees are the tallest, towering as much as 200 feet above the forest floor. The animals found are eagles, monkeys, bats, and butterflies. Food Supply : Food Supply Many delicious food originally came from the rainforest, including bananas, pineapples, oranges, lemons, coconuts, cashews, peanuts, corn, avocados, tomatoes, eggplants, chocolate/cocoa, and even kola nut, which is used to flavor cola drinks. Our Greatest Pharmacies : At least 25 percent of all modern drugs came originally from rainforests. The U.S. National Cancer Institute has identified 3000 plants that are active against cancer cells. Seventy percent of these plants are found in the rainforest. Today, over 100 U.S. pharmaceutical companies are involved in research programs to discover new drugs or cures from plants. Our Greatest Pharmacies Typically knowledge of medicinal plants is carried by the Shaman or "medicine man" of a village. The Shaman’s extensive experience greatly contributes to research. Shrinking Rainforests : Shrinking Rainforests At least 42 million acres of tropical forests are lost each year, an area the size of Washington State. Rainforests once covered 14% of the earth's land surface; now they cover just 6% and experts estimate that the remaining ones could be consumed in less than 40 years. At the present rate of destruction, the rainforests will be almost gone by the year 2030. Deforestation and Its Effects : Over the past 150 years, deforestation has contributed an estimated 30 percent of the atmospheric build-up of carbon dioxide. Deforestation and Its Effects Some 100 species become extinct every day due to tropical deforestation. Tree burning and decomposition pump into the atmosphere even more carbon dioxide, along with methane, another major greenhouse gas. Extinction : Extinction Some 100 species become extinct every day due to tropical deforestation. Approximately 5 to 10 percent of tropical forest species will become extinct each decade during the next half-century. More indigenous cultures have disappeared over the last century than ever before. With them have gone centuries of accumulated knowledge of the medicinal value of rainforest species. The People of the Rainforests : The People of the Rainforests Indigenous groups depend on the rainforests for their food and shelter; so as more and more trees are cut and more and more of the forests are destroyed, these people are also being killed. Mbuti and Baka Pygmies live in the rainforests of Central Africa. The Huli tribe lives in the highland forests of Papua, New Guinea. One of the largest groups of Amerindian people in South America is the Yanomami. Rainforests for Tomorrow : Rainforests for Tomorrow We still have time to save the rainforests before it is too late. Our actions can change the world! Rainforests : Rainforests Presentation created by: C. Ferrer Online Course: Intro to Authoring Tools Offered by Dr. C. Shamburg, Educational Technology Department, NJCU, Summer 2008 Web Resources: Google.com www.rain-tree.com www,enchantedlearning.com www.partnersinrhyme.com www.mongabay.com http://reddodo,com Background music: Can you feel the love tonight?