Microclimates And The Effect On Wildlife

The world we live in has fascinating landscapes and climates on every step we take, providing us with a vast contrast of topography and different levels of elevation to which communities of animals and humans call home. Throughout the history of the Earth, we’ve studied various types of eras such as the Mesozoic and Pleistocene.

Picture credit: osu.structure

But what do they have in common, these eras coincided with climate change and the extinction of the megafauna that lived in those eras like the Tyrannosaurus and the Wooly Mammoth.

So let’s start by defining what is a microclimate?

The microclimate is the suite of climatic conditions measured in localised areas near the earth’s surface. Microclimates contain environmental variables like temperature, light, wind and moisture. They are a local set of atmospheric conditions from those in the surrounding areas with either slight differences or substantial ones.

Types Of Microclimates

There are different sets of microclimates depending on the landscape and topographic region. They are

Uplands

Upland areas are places where the land in one area is higher than in the surrounding areas. Upland microclimates tend to be cooler and windier than the areas around them.

Picture courtesy: internetgeography

Coastal

The word 'coastal' means near the coast. This means that you will find coastal microclimates in the areas between the land and the sea.

Picture courtesy: 10mosttoday

Forests

Although tropical rainforests are found on only about 6% of the Earth’s surface, they contribute significantly to the transfer of atmospheric water vapour. This process is caused by the evaporation of green leaves. The forest areas are less windy and cool than their surrounding grasslands. The reason for this is that trees block the way of air and also block the fraction of solar radiation from them.

Pic courtesy: frontiersin.org

Urban Regions

Urban areas are the most complex of all microclimate areas. The temperature of these areas is higher than the surrounding areas. The details of rainfall in a town or city depend very much on the topography of the area.

Picture courtesy: sciencedirect

Impact Of Microclimate On Biodiversity

As the definition suggests, microclimate is the suite of localised climatic conditions near the Earth’s surface. This conveys to us the growth of certain flora and fauna growing in different climate zones.

Picture Courtesy: national geographic

We all know about the Amazon rainforests as tropical rainforests since they grow near the equator, such rainforests need a warm climate to thrive in allowing a plethora of fauna and flora to live suited to their liking.

Other such specific climate zones allow specific species to develop and evolve as time goes on in a cycle of life and death. But with the rise of human industrialization and bad management of pollution, time is ticking before climate change causes more problems for nature and us.

If you like to read about animals, climate change then this is the blog for you. Please like and share the blog and as always take it easy👻

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Abhidyu Ajila

Abhidyu Ajila

A zoology student who talks animals, conservation, evolution and geography