Ginger flower, Amazon Rainforest

Rainforest Education

A learning resource for students of nature of all ages!


About Rainforests

The Canopy

The canopy is the "roof" of the rainforest, which is formed by trees which may be 80 to 150 feet tall! In the canopy there is sunlight, wind, rain, and variations in temperature. Flowers and fruits are found here, as are the animals that eat them (and sometimes the animals that eat THEM!). Many insects, frogs, and birds live here. Some trees - the "emergent layer" - will even grow upwards from the canopy.


The Understory

The understory is the area between the canopy and the forest floor. The air is still, the humidity is high, the temperature is steady, and the light is less intense than above. Birds and butterflies make this their domain, and many animals travel between the forest floor and canopy.


The forest floor

The forest floor is where the insects live - and of course the animals that eat them. Most - but not all - plants get their start on the forest floor. It is hot and still, and the light is often dim. In some areas the forest floor is flooded for part of the year, in others it remains dry. The forest floor may be fertile, but is often not.

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