What Is a Terrestrial Biome?

Terrestrial biomes are major regions in the Earth that share the same climate despite being in different geographical locations. The Earth has six major land biomes: rainforests, deserts, tundras, grasslands, taiga and temperate deciduous forests. Each biome differs in weather, latitude, topography, relative humidity and amount of sunlight. These climatic regions are determined mainly by rainfall and temperature and are distinguished by their predominant plants and animal communities.

Each biome has a unique set of flora and fauna that adapt and interact naturally to obtain natural resources and survive in the environment. Plants in the desert have adapted to the lack of water and extreme aridity by storing water in their stems and by shedding their leaves or becoming dormant during dry seasons. Savannahs or tropical grasslands, which are prone to wildfires, are home to animals with long and strong legs that enable them to outrun the fire.

Most trees in temperate deciduous rainforests lose their leaves to preserve water during winter, while a wide range of animals and plants thrive in tropical rainforests. Taiga or coniferous forest is home to drought-tolerant, evergreen and needle-shaped trees. The thin, cone-shaped branches of the trees help shed snow during the region’s long winter to prevent being broken. Grasses, small woody shrubs, lichens and mosses are the only plant species that can be found on tundra, the coldest region in the world.