Facts About Tropical Rainforests

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1 Tropical rainforests are homes to many animals and people, and help support our lives. Rainforests are hot, rainy places with lots of huge trees. The plants have many leaves. They are found in places like Central and South America, Africa, Asia and Australia.
2 When scientists talk about rainforests, they talk about the three sections or layers of them. The bottom layer is called the “ground layer”. Here live people, animals and plants. The ground is lush and damp. The next layer is the “understory” which is bushy. You can find trees and animals in this layer, too. The top is called the “canopy”. It is very thick. Very little light gets in, so the rainforest is dark. The canopy is the protection for the rainforest.
3 If you look down from an airplane on a rainforest it looks like a big green carpet or green grass everywhere. The plants from the rainforests help the world to breathe. They make oxygen for us. We need this to breathe.
4 Many animals and insects live in rainforests on the bottom, understory or canopy levels. There are monkeys, parrots, toucans, birds, jaguars, snakes, butterflies, frogs, anteaters, and ants.
5 Beautiful plants live there, too. Flowers like the hibiscus, orchid, and passion flower thrive in rainforests.
6 The rainforests are home to lakes, streams, and rivers. Here live other creatures like crocodiles, water lizards, turtles, snakes, and fish.
7 People in tribes have called the rainforests their home for centuries. They can find most everything they need to live on right in the rainforests.
8 Groups are helping to keep the rainforests alive for the people and animals there and for us to keep fresh air on earth.

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Word Lists:

Rainforest : a luxuriant, dense forest rich in biodiversity, found typically in tropical areas with consistently heavy rainfall

Canopy : an ornamental cloth covering hung or held up over something, especially a throne or bed

Layer : a sheet, quantity, or thickness of material, typically one of several, covering a surface or body

Lush : (of vegetation) growing luxuriantly

Lizard : a reptile that typically has a long body and tail, four legs, movable eyelids, and a rough, scaly, or spiny skin.

Oxygen : a colorless, odorless reactive gas, the chemical element of atomic number 8 and the life-supporting component of the air.

Thrive : (of a child, animal, or plant) grow or develop well or vigorously

Damp : slightly wet

Insect : a small arthropod animal that has six legs and generally one or two pairs of wings

Scientist : a person who is studying or has expert knowledge of one or more of the natural or physical sciences


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