What is the pampas of South America?

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There are places that we have heard a lot, but few imagine that it is.The same can be said about the pampas in South America.Interesting name known to many of the lines from the song.That's just how it turned out, the buffalo in the Pampas there, but there are many other interesting plants and animals.

What pampas (pampas)?

Under such an interesting name hides quite ordinary for us concept - steppe.It is they, in fact, are the Pampas.The only difference is that they are located in only one place on the planet - South America.Pampa extends into the southern part of the meridional deflection between the Brazilian Highlands and the Andes.It surrounds the estuary of La Plata from all three sides, and on the south and east out to the waters of the Atlantic Ocean.Most of the area falls on the pampas of Uruguay, and northeastern Argentina and southern Brazil.

Relief and geological structure

Barrens (pampas) are flat or hilly plains area.The relief is characterized by alternating of Hercynian and Precambrian meridional ridges, resulting in a combination of deep depressions and flat plains.Eastern Pampa gradually merges with the so-called West, or dry, which is bounded on the west blocky ridges Predkordiler.They are separated from each other underestimated the earth's crust (grabens).Their bottom descends to a depth of 2000 meters, they can be completely or partially filled with salt marshes, salt lakes or swamps.

Climatic conditions

Pampa in South America is located in the subtropical climate zone, so almost throughout the year, this area has been influenced by air masses coming from the Atlantic Ocean.Rainfall (about 2000 mm per year), distributed evenly, droughts are extremely rare.However, the dry pampas plains begin to experience the effect of continental climate.Precipitation decreased (300-500 mm), are less uniform, most of them account for daylight saving time.

having an idea of ​​what the pampas and where it is not difficult to guess that this area is characterized by hot summer temperature ranges from 25 ° to 45 ° C.It reaches its maximum value of the rivers Parana and Uruguay.For areas characterized by hot and humid wind from the north.The average winter temperature is also positive, but sometimes can be frozen and even cold (-10 ° C on the territory of the wet pampa).Snow falls rarely, and immediately melts cover is formed.

territory between the rivers flooded many good tributaries Uruguay and Parana.However, moving on, it should be noted that in the territory of the wet pampas of rivers is much less, and in the dry and completely they are temporary and are flowing only during showers.But a lot of salt water and groundwater, which could not but affect the flora and fauna.

Flora

pampas pampas of South America is now almost completely used for agriculture (arable land, pastures and villages next to them).Natural vegetation and ecosystems are preserved only in a small area.The flora is rich, there is a dominant position occupied by cereals (about 1000 species).Vegetation depends on the soil and rainfall.So in Uruguay and southern Brazil is dominated by forest.They are formed mainly in the river valleys.For evergreen forests are characteristic species (Araucaria, bamboo, Paraguay tea, yodina rombolistny, quebracho, and so on. D.) And lianas.

the open space between the rivers they are replaced by cereals, as they completely occupied territory humid pampas.Special mention should look as pampas grass, or cortaderia Sello (pictured above).It is a perennial plant, reaching a height of up to 4 meters.It forms a large turf-like bumps.During his high external decorative and showy flowering (panicle can be white, pink or purple color up to 40 cm) was highly popular among gardeners and florists.Dry Pampa is characterized by low rainfall, so looks like a typical semi-desert, the soil less fertile, there is a large amount of salt marshes.Here the vegetation is very poor and is represented by thorny bushes, cactuses.

Fauna Pampa

Fauna has also undergone great changes due to human activities.It is not the largest group should include those that are able to move quickly (in search of food, water and shelter).It is a few predators (including Puma cat and Geoffroy), pampas deer, the Mustang (imported once Spaniards and wild horses), Azarov opossum and others.

For Pampa increasingly characterized by an abundance of species of birds and rodents.Most of the birds are migratory category.They arrive in Pampa for nesting and hatching chicks.To mention only a few types: ipikaha, ibises, tinamou and so on. D. The last kind of looks like a partridge familiar to all, but the plumage color more vivid.Also, to the inhabitants of the pampa it is one of the ancient birds - ostrich rhea (pictured).Because nutria rodents is worth noting, viskashu.

Pampa and human activities

Europeans first learned what the pampas, in the early 15th century.The local population was engaged in agriculture in the territory and cattle long before.Around the 16-17 centuries formed a special stratum of the population - herders gauchos.They were semi-nomadic, and often they are compared with the North American cowboys.The first gauchos were the children of local Indian women from the Spaniards.To date, as already mentioned, human activity has changed ecosystems beyond recognition, almost no corner untouched.Now it is one of the most important agricultural regions, as well as the main economic area in Argentina.Pampa is characterized by its densely populated.For example, 75% of the population of Argentina resides precisely in this area.The largest city - Rosario, La Plata, Lujan, Santa Fe.

on the territory of the pampas planted about 85% of corn and wheat, grown more than 60% of the total livestock population.All these products are for the most part is exported from Argentina to Europe.

On the question of what the Pampas, now you can safely answer farmland.In this connection there were two environmental problems: whittling down the degradation of natural vegetation and steppe from overgrazing.However, the authorities of several countries are trying to improve the situation and keep the ecosystem even in protected areas in protected areas.