The Amazon Rainforest is located in South America but it takes over about ¼ of South America! The Amazon is the world’s largest tropical rainforest as it extends over 300 miles from the ANDES mountains to the ATLANTIC OCEAN.
The rainforest covers parts of BRAZIL, PERU, ECUADOR, COLOMBIA, BOLIVIA, and VENEZUELA. Since the rainforest is close to the equator, its CLIMATE is hot and humid at all times. From 40 to 80 in (100 cm to 200 cm) of rain falls annually in the eastern section of the rainforest, while the western region experiences around 160 in (400 cm) of rain each year.
THUNDERSTORMS occur more than 200 days of the year. In sections of the rainforest that are closest to the equator, rain falls almost constantly. Trees within the rainforest are always green, but many shed their leaves in response to biological and climatological changes.
The rainforest is made up of four layers: the emergent layer, the canopy, the lower canopy, and the forest floor.
The emergent layer is located at the top of the trees of the rainforest. This layer is subject to intensive amounts of sunlight, high temperatures, low humidity, and strong winds.
The canopy, sometimes called the upper canopy, is made up of the tallest trees in the forest. These trees, which may grow to 200 ft (61 m), protect the land below from harsh sunlight.
The middle layer of the rainforest, known as the understory or lower canopy, may be as high as 20 ft (6 m). It is made up of various small trees, vines, and shrubs.
The forest floor or the jungle is composed of ground cover such as herbs, mosses, and fungi. The wildlife in this section of the rainforest eats roots, seeds, leaves, fruit, and smaller animals.