Grasslands are lands with natural grass covers, devoid of trees or with very few isolated trees. Grasslands make up 25 percent of the Earth’s land surface and dominated in regions with limited rainfall. The grassland habitat is often greatly dependent on the region in which it is found, as grasslands differ from one another around the world. In temperate areas, such as north-west Europe, grasslands are dominated by perennial species, whereas in warmer climates it is the annual plant species that form a greater part of the vegetation.
According to John Peterson (2017) Grasslands are identified into two main parts, the Tropical and Temperate Grasslands. According to Jeremy M.B. Smith (2108) Tropical grasslands are warm all year round with established rainy and dry seasons. During the rainy season, tropical grasslands receive between 50 and 130 centimeters of rain. Most prominent tropical grassland is the African savanna, which has an occasional tree and is home to many of the world’s most spectacular species, such as elephants, giraffes, lions and zebras. Savanna grass is usually quite short, making for good grazing and hunting grounds.
According to Rob Nelson (2016) Temperate grasslands also have two seasons, growing and dormant. During the dormant season, no grass or crops grow because it is too cold. These grasslands make for excellent farming because of their deep and nutrient-rich soils. Temperate grasslands receive between 25 and 75 centimeters of rain a year. The most notable temperate grasslands are the North American prairies, which are home to a wide variety of wildlife, including pronghorn antelope, mice, jackrabbits, foxes, snakes and coyotes. Grass here can grow quite tall, reaching up to seven meters in height. In general, temperate grasslands receive 20 to 35 inches of rain in a year. Rain usually falls seasonally, mostly in late spring and early summer.
It is important to remember that grass can thrive in wide range of climates. In fact, grasslands make up over a quarter of the Earth’s land. Other notable grassland ecosystems are flooded grasslands, polar or tundra grasslands, montane grasslands and xeric or desert grasslands. Grasses are also identified to its kingdom, phylum, family, species, domain, class and genus. Each kind of grass has its own classification and benefits to the environment and locale.
Grassland once covered nearly two thirds of land on Earth. It has changed rapidly due to agriculture and farming and today, only a small area of grassland still contains its original animals and vegetation.
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