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Mongabay.com is considered a leading source of information on tropical forests by some of the world's top ecologists and conservationists. TROPICAL RAINFORESTS: Types of Forest

Changing Times, Changing Forests



In 1997, the widespread fires in tropical rainforests around the globe illustrated that drought can affect rainforests, especially those that have been degraded by logging and agricultural conversion. Such practices alter the forest canopy coverage, subjecting the usually humid rainforest microclimate to penetrating sunlight that dries out the forest interior. Grassy and bushy growth in recent forest clearings adds to the fire threat. The combination of this forest degradation and the unusually strong el Nino of 1997-98 made 1997 the year of the forest fire in the tropics. Studies by the Woods Hole Research Center indicate that as much as 50% of the Amazon rainforest is dangerously flammable and could go up in smoke should agricultural fires spread.





Continued: Structure of the tropical rainforest


Other pages in this section:

Tropical Rainforests of the World
Types of Rainforest
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References
Biogeographical Forest Realms

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Copyright Rhett Butler 1994-2015

Carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions generated from mongabay.com operations (server, data transfer, travel) are mitigated through an association with Anthrotect,
an organization working with Afro-indigenous and Embera communities to protect forests in Colombia's Darien region.
Anthrotect is protecting the habitat of mongabay's mascot: the scale-crested pygmy tyrant.

"Rainforest" is used interchangeably with "rain forest" on this site. "Jungle" is generally not used.