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Encyclopedia > New Caledonia rain forests

The New Caledonia rain forests are a terrestrial ecoregion, located in New Caledonia in the South Pacific. It is a tropical moist broadleaf forest ecoregion, part of the Australasia ecozone. Ecoregions are defined by World Wildlife Fund as relatively large units of land or water containing a distinct assemblage of natural communities and species, with boundaries that approximate the original extent of natural communities prior to major land-use change. Terrestrial ecoregions are land ecoregions, as distinct from freshwater ecoregions... South Pacific is a musical play with music by Richard Rodgers and lyrics by Oscar Hammerstein II that opened on Broadway on April 7, 1949, and ran for more than five years. ... Tropical and subtropical moist broadleaf forests, also known as tropical rain forests, are a tropical and subtropical biome. ... The Australasian ecozone includes Australia, the island of New Guinea (including Papua New Guinea and the Indonesian province of Papua), and the eastern part of the Indonesian archipelago, including the island of Sulawesi, the Moluccan islands (the Indonesian provinces of Maluku and North Maluku) and islands of Lombok, Sumbawa, Sumba...

Contents


Setting

The ecoregion covers the windward eastern side of Grand Terre, New Caledonia's mountainous main island, as well as the smaller Loyalty Islands to the east and the Isle of Pines to the south of Grand Terre. The ecoregion covers an area of 14,600 square kilometers (5,600 square miles). Windward is the side of a boat into which the wind is blowing. ... The Loyalty Islands. ... The Isle of Pines or Kunie is a small island belonging to the French territory of New Caledonia, measuring 14km by 8km. ...


Grand Terre is a long island that runs approximately north-south, with a mountain range down the center with five peaks that exceed 1500 meters elevation. The Loyalty Islands and Ile des Pins are much lower. New Caledonia lies astride the Tropic of Capricorn, between 19º and 23º south latitude, 1,200 km east of Australia and 1,500 km northeast of New Zealand. The Tropic of Capricorn is one of the five major circles of latitude that mark maps of the Earth. ... Latitude, denoted by the Greek letter φ, gives the location of a place on Earth north or south of the Equator. ...


The climate of the islands is tropical, and rainfall is highly seasonal, brought by trade winds that usually come from the east. Rainfall averages about 1,500 mm yearly on the Loyalty Islands, 2,000 mm at low elevations on eastern Grand Terre, and 2,000-4,000 mm at high elevations on Grand Terre. The western slopes of Grand Terre, which are in the rain shadow of the central mountain range, are much drier, and are home to the New Caledonia dry forests ecoregion. The tropics are the geographic region of the Earth centered on the equator and limited in latitude by the two tropics: the Tropic of Cancer in the north and the Tropic of Capricorn in the southern hemisphere. ... In meteorology, precipitation is any kind of water that falls from the sky as part of the weather. ... The trade winds are a pattern of wind found in bands around Earths equatorial region. ... A rain shadow (or more accurately, precipitation shadow) is a dry region on the surface of the Earth that is leeward or behind a mountain with respect to the prevailing wind direction. ...


New Caledonia is an ancient fragment of Gondwana, the southern supercontinent. It separated from Australia 85 million years ago, and remained attached to New Zealand until 55 million years ago. It has been islolated from other land masses since then, although a number of plants and animals have been able to cross the straits separating New Caledonia from neighboring islands. Pangea broke into the two supercontinents, Laurasia and Gondwana The southern supercontinent Gondwana (originally Gondwanaland) included most of the landmasses which make up todays continents of the southern hemisphere, including Antarctica, South America, Africa, Madagascar, India, Arabia, Australia-New Guinea and New Zealand. ...


Flora

The New Caledonia rain forests are made up of three predominant forest types. The lowland rain forests cover the Loyalty Islands, and the Iles des Pines and the lower elevations of Grand Terre. Montane forests cover the higher elevations of Grand Terre. The wet maquis forests of Grand Terre are low shrub forests found on rocky soils derived from ultramafic rocks. Maquis (French) or macchia (Italian; plural macchie) is a shrubland biota in Mediterranean countries, typically consisting of densely-growing evergreen shrubs such as sage, juniper and myrtle. ... Ultramafic rocks are igneous rocks with very low silica content (less than 45%) and are composed of usually greater than 90% mafic minerals (dark colored, high magnesium and iron content). ...


The predominant flora of New Caledonia rain forests is derived from the Antarctic flora of ancient southern Gondwana. Like the Australian rainforests and the temperate forests of New Zealand, conifers of the southern hemisphere families Araucariaceae and Podocarpaceae are mixed with angiosperm trees, including the southern hemisphere genus Nothofagus and trees and shrubs of families Myrtaceae and Proteaceae. Minke whale Minke whale Minke whale Minke whale Minke whale Minke whale Minke whale Minke whale Minke whale Minke whale Minke whale Minke whale Minke whale Minke whale Minke whale Minke whale Minke whale Minke whale Minke whale Minke whale Minke whale Minke whale Minke whale Minke whale Minke whale... Orders & Families Cordaitales † Pinales   Pinaceae - Pine family   Araucariaceae - Araucaria family   Podocarpaceae - Yellow-wood family   Sciadopityaceae - Umbrella-pine family   Cupressaceae - Cypress family   Cephalotaxaceae - Plum-yew family   Taxaceae - Yew family Vojnovskyales † Voltziales † The conifers, division Pinophyta, are one of 13 or 14 division level taxa within the Kingdom Plantae. ... Genera Agathis Araucaria Wollemia The Araucariaceae are a very ancient family of conifers. ... Genera Acmopyle Afrocarpus Dacrycarpus Dacrydium Falcatifolium Halocarpus Lagarostrobos Lepidothamnus Manoao Microcachrys Microstrobos Nageia Parasitaxus Phyllocladus Podocarpus Prumnopitys Retrophyllum Saxegothaea Sundacarpus A large family of mainly Southern Hemisphere conifers, with 18-19 genera and about 170-200 species of evergreen trees and shrubs. ... Classes Magnoliopsida - Dicots Liliopsida - Monocots The flowering plants (also angiosperms or Magnoliophyta) are one of the major groups of modern plants, comprising those that produce seeds in specialized reproductive organs called flowers, where the ovulary or carpel is enclosed. ... Species Nothofagus alpina - Rauli Beech Nothofagus antarctica - Antarctic Beech Nothofagus betuloides - Magallanes Beech Nothofagus cunninghamii - Myrtle Beech Nothofagus dombeyi - Coigüe Beech Nothofagus fusca - Red Beech Nothofagus gunnii - Tanglefoot Beech Nothofagus menziesii - Silver Beech Nothofagus moorei - Negrohead Beech Nothofagus obliqua - Roble Beech Nothofagus pumilio - Lenga Beech Nothofagus solanderi - Black Beech... Genera 130; see list The Myrtaceae or Myrtle family are a family of dicotyledon plants, placed within the order Myrtales. ... Genera See text The Proteaceae are a large family of flowering plants, which includes 75-80 genera and 1500 species of evergreen trees, shrubs, and herbs. ...


The lowland forests are a generally a mixed-species composition, interspersed with some single species stands. The predominant conifers are Araucaria columnaris, A. bernieri, Agathis lanceolata, A. ovata (Araucariaceae), and Dacrydium araucarioides, Dacrycarpus vieillardii and Falcatifolium taxoides (Podocarpaceae). Predominant angiosperm trees include Montrouziera cauliflora, Calophyllum neocaledonicum, Dysoxylum spp., Neogullauminia cleopatra, and Hernandia cordigera, together with species of the Proteaceae genera Kermadecia, Macadamia, and Sleumerodendron. Araucaria, Callistemon, and Nothofagus predominate in the single-species stands. Species See text Araucaria is a genus of coniferous trees in the family Araucariaceae. ... Species See text The genus Agathis, commonly known as kauri or dammar forms a relatively small group of 21 species of evergreen trees in the family Araucariaceae, characteristically with very large trunks and little or no branching for some way up. ... species D. cupressinum Dacrydium is a genus of conifers belonging to the podocarp family, Podocarpaceae. ... species Dacrycarpus is a genus of conifers belonging to the Podocarp family, Podocarpaceae. ... species Falcatifolium is a genus of conifers belonging to the podocarp family, Podocarpaceae. ... Genera See text The Proteaceae are a large family of flowering plants, which includes 75-80 genera and 1500 species of evergreen trees, shrubs, and herbs. ... Species Macadamia integrifolia Macadamia tetraphylla The macadamia nut is the fruit of a tree native to the east coast of Australia. ... Species About 34 species including:   Callistemon brachyandrus   Callistemon citrinus   Callistemon formosus   Callistemon linearifolius   Callistemon linearis   Callistemon pachyphyllus   Callistemon pallidus   Callistemon phoeniceus   Callistemon pinifolius   Callistemon pityoides   Callistemon rigidus   Callistemon rugulosus   Callistemon salignus   Callistemon speciosus   Callistemon subulatus   Callistemon viminalis   Callistemon viridiflorus Bottlebrush (Callistemon) is a genus with 34 species from the family...


The Montane rain forests are also mixed-species, predominantly the conifers Araucaria, Agathis, Podocarpus, Dacrydium, Libocedrus, and Acmopyle, and the angiosperms Metrosideros, Weinmannia, Quintinia, and Nothofagus. Metrosideros is a genus of tree native to the islands of the Pacific Ocean, including the Bonin Islands, Polynesia, and Melanesia. ... Species Nothofagus alpina - Rauli Beech Nothofagus antarctica - Antarctic Beech Nothofagus betuloides - Magallanes Beech Nothofagus cunninghamii - Myrtle Beech Nothofagus dombeyi - Coigüe Beech Nothofagus fusca - Red Beech Nothofagus gunnii - Tanglefoot Beech Nothofagus menziesii - Silver Beech Nothofagus moorei - Negrohead Beech Nothofagus obliqua - Roble Beech Nothofagus pumilio - Lenga Beech Nothofagus solanderi - Black Beech...


The Maquis forests hold a great variety of species, with many endemics. The ultramafic rocks, which formed in the deep ocean, are rich in metals, including nickel, magnesium, chromium, and manganese, which are toxic to many plants. The predominant trees are stunted Araucarias. In biology and ecology endemic means exclusively native to a place or biota, in contrast to cosmopolitan or one of various ways of being not native (e. ... General Name, Symbol, Number nickel, Ni, 28 Chemical series transition metals Group, Period, Block 10, 4, d Appearance lustrous, metallic Atomic mass 58. ... General Name, Symbol, Number magnesium, Mg, 12 Chemical series alkaline earth metals Group, Period, Block 2, 3, s Appearance silvery white Atomic mass 24. ... General Name, Symbol, Number chromium, Cr, 24 Chemical series transition metals Group, Period, Block 6, 4, d Appearance silvery metallic Atomic mass 51. ... General Name, Symbol, Number manganese, Mn, 25 Chemical series transition metals Group, Period, Block 7, 4, d Appearance silvery metallic Atomic mass 54. ...


Fauna

New Caledonia has one of the most enigmatic birds of the world. The endangered Kagu. It is related to the cranes and it lives very hidden. It is also the heraldic bird of the island. Another endemic bird is the New Caledonian Rail. This critically endangered bird was thought to be extinct but was recently rediscovered. The seashells from New Caledonia are in great demand by collectors. KAGU-FM is a Classical outlet run by Gonzaga University in Spokane, Washington. ...


Conservation

See also

Biodiversity of New Caledonia The Biodiversity of New Caledonia, a large Pacific island group, is considered to be one of the most important in the region. ...


Reference

Flannery, Tim (1994). The Future Eaters. Grove Press, New York. 1994 was a common year starting on Saturday of the Gregorian calendar, and was designated the International year of the Family. ... Midtown Manhattan, looking north from the Empire State Building, 2005 New York City (officially named the City of New York) is the most populous city in the United States, the most densely populated major city in North America, and is at the center of international finance, politics, entertainment, and culture. ...


External link

New Caledonia rain forests (World Wildlife Fund)


  Results from FactBites:
 
New Caledonia - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (2907 words)
New Caledonia is located around 21°30′ S 165°30′ E in the southwest Pacific Ocean, approximately 1,200 km east of Australia and 1,500 km northwest of New Zealand.
New Caledonia lies astride the Tropic of Capricorn, between 19° and 23° south latitude.
The New Caledonia Barrier Reef, which surrounds the Grande Terre and the Île des Pins, is the second-largest coral reef in the world after Australia's Great Barrier Reef, reaching a length of 1500 km.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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