Footsteps in the Forest: Biome Explorers

Our last biome journey is into the world’s forests. Did you know that there are more than 60,000 different species of trees in the world? They also cover one third of Earth’s land, totaling more than three trillion trees! In Footsteps in the Forests we’ll take a walk on a rainforest canopy walkway, sit quietly to observe temperate forest wildlife, and bundle up to visit a chilly boreal forest.

First stop – the Amazon rainforest! There we’ll see an amazing variety of biodiversity in each of the four layers of the rainforest: the forest floor, the understory, the canopy, and the emergent layer. Hopefully we’ll see monkeys swinging from tree to tree, toucans tossing fruit to one another, and leafcutter ants marching one by one – HURRAH!

The next stop on the journey is a temperate forest in North America, home to both deciduous and coniferous trees. Other plants include ferns, mushrooms, mosses, and wildflowers. These forests are also home to many kinds of mammals, reptiles, amphibians, insects, and birds. As we sit and listen we may hear squirrels chittering, and woodpeckers peck, peck, pecking away.

For our last stop, in the boreal forest of Canada, grab a coat because even in the summertime, it doesn’t get very warm. Summers are also short in the boreal forest, which is why most of the trees are coniferous; since their needles don’t fall off before winter, they are able to soak up sunlight all year! Many animals here are only part-time residents, but full-time residents like snowshoe hares, lynx, and moose are well-adapted to survive in the cold and snow. Or, you could make like a bear and hibernate, sleeping away the winter!

No matter where you travel, there’s lots to see and learn, and lots of exploring to do!