They occur in the IndoMalayan Archipelagos, the Amazon Basin, the African Congo, the Philippines, India, Madagascar, and across the Pacific including Papua New Guinea and Australia.
As much as 50% of the worlds’ species occurs in these rainforest alone, making them the most biodiverse ecosystems on the planet. Plants may either be evergreen or semideciduous, and typically occur across five strata. Diversity and density decreases towards the forest floor due to decreasing availability sunlight. Constant warm and wet temperatures encourage rapid growth rates, greater than any other ecosystem on earth.
Unfortunately tropical and subtropical moist forests are under great pressure from deforestation and degradation. Many species live in very specific environments, occur broadly but sporadically, or form specialised relationships with other species making them particularly vulnerable to disturbance.
Olson, D., Dinerstein, E., Wikramanayake, E., Burgess, N., Powell, G., Underwood, E., D'amico, J., Itoua, I., Strand, H., Morrison, J., Loucks, C., Allnutt, T., Ricketts, T., Kura, Y. Lamoreux, J., Wettengel, W., Hedao, P., Kassem, K. (2001) Terrestrial Ecoregions of the World: A New Map of Life on Earth: A new global map of terrestrial ecoregions provides an innovative tool for conserving biodiversity. BioScience 51, 933–938, Reference and more information
|Global distribution of tropical and subtropical moist broadleaf forest as determined by Olson et al., 2001.|