Ecoregions

An ecoregion is a contiguous area characterized by well defined similarity in flora and fauna as well as geomorphology, climate and soils; ecoregions are generally relatively large geographic units on the order of 50,000 square kilometers or more. Ecoregions may be terrestrial or marine, and do not recognize any political boundaries or landscape alterations by humans. Generally an ecoregion is depicted by a geographic descriptor coupled with a biome identity, further articulating one or more specific climatic or dominant plant community appellations: for example, Chilean Mattoral or Madagascar Dry Deciduous Forests.

There are several alternative formal naming schemes for the Earth's ecoregions; one of the most widely used, developed by the World Wildlife Foundation, recognizes 867 separate ecoregions. Because of the very large scale of an ecoregion, the landscape is not monolithic, but may have pockets of ecological diversity; however, the ecoregion is defined by its preponderant vegetative, geological and meteorological composition.  Correspondingly boundaries between regions are sometimes diffuse, resulting in a broad ecotone.

 

  • Ecoregion Featured Article Ecoregion Ecoregion

    An ecoregion is a relatively large unit of land or sea that contains geographically distinct assemblage of natural communities with boundaries that approximate the original extent... More »

  • Jalisco dry forests Featured Article Jalisco dry forests Jalisco dry forests

    WWF Terrestrial Ecoregions Collection The Jalisco dry forests on the Pacific coast of Mexico is characterized by low lying mountains and a... More »

  • Belizean coast mangroves Featured Article Belizean coast mangroves Belizean coast mangroves

    The Belizean coast mangroves ecoregion (part of the larger Mesoamerican Gulf-Caribbean mangroves ecoregion) extends along the Caribbean Coast from Guatemala, encompassing the... More »

  • Borneo peat swamp forests Featured Article Borneo peat swamp forests Borneo peat swamp forests

    WWF Terrestrial Ecoregions Collection Although the Borneo peat swamp forests are not as biodiverse as neighbouring lowland rainforests, the... More »

  • Great Victoria Desert Featured Article Great Victoria Desert Great Victoria Desert

    WWF Terrestrial Ecoregions Collection A vast, sparsely populated region covered by dunefields and gibber plains, the Great Victoria Desert... More »

  • Magellanic subpolar forests Featured Article Magellanic subpolar forests Magellanic subpolar forests

    WWF Terrestrial Ecoregions Collection The Magellanic subpolar forests is an ecoregion dominated by trees of the genus Nothofagus; this... More »

  • Patagonian steppe Featured Article Patagonian steppe Patagonian steppe

    WWF Terrestrial Ecoregions Collection The Patagonian steppe ecoregion extends approximately from the mid-Andean Precordillera southward,... More »

  • Angolan mopane woodlands Featured Article Angolan mopane woodlands Angolan mopane woodlands

    WWF Terrestrial Ecoregions Collection The Angolan Mopane Woodlands are located in northern Namibia and  southern Angola, completely... More »

  • Ecoregions of Chile Featured Article Ecoregions of Chile Ecoregions of Chile

    Chile has eight ecoregions that occur entirely or partly within its borders on the mainland and three ecorgions offshore: Sechura desert Atacama... More »

Recently Updated
Eastern Carpathian beech forests Last Updated on 2014-07-08 14:27:50 Primeval beech forests of the Carpathians are comprised of ten reserves are in the eastern Carpathian Mountains, five clustered in eastern Slovakia and southwestern Ukraine near the Polish border, and five in southwest Ukraine near the point the mountains pass into Romania. These forests, classified as substantially primeval by the United Nations, are situated between 47°56’12”N to 49°05’10”N and 22°11’23”E to 24°23’35”E. 1908:    First Ukrainian forest Natural Reserve established in Stuzhytsia; 1920s:  Several Ukrainian beech forests became Protected Areas; 1968:    The Carpathian Biosphere Reserve created by Soviet Council decree 568; 1977:    The Eastern Carpathian National Park established in Slovakia 1980:    Karpatskiy National Park (50,303 ha)... More »
Malaysia Collection- Ecology and Biodiversity Last Updated on 2014-07-01 17:27:52 The Malaysia Collection: Ecology and Biodiversity includes a variety of scientific articles on the ecoregions of Malaysia, as well as specific species articles. The following outline is a guide to the articles of this collection:  Borneo lowland rainforests Borneo montane rainforests Borneo peat swamp Fforests Kinabalu montane alpine meadows Myanmar coast mangroves Peninsular Malaysian montane rainforests Peninsular Malaysian peat swamp forests Peninsular Malaysian rainforests South China Sea Islands Sunda Shelf mangroves Tenasserim-South Thailand semi-evergreen rainforests Biological diversity in Indo-Burma Biological diversity in Sundaland Malaysia - Forests, Grasslands, and Drylands Factsheet (WRI) Forests of Borneo Terrestrial mammals of Malaysia Asian elephant Clouded leopard Orangutan Marine mammals of... More »
Canadian Aspen forests and parklands Last Updated on 2014-07-01 15:39:55 WWF Terrestrial Ecoregions Collection The Canadian Aspen forests and parklands ecoregion stretches in an arc from the Manitoba/North Dakota border in the east to central Alberta in the west with a disjunct occurrence in northwestern Alberta crossing the British Columbia border in the Peace River area. The preponderance of this ecoregion is situated in Canada, with a very small element residing in the USA state of North Dakota. This ecoregion is classified primarily as having a subhumid low boreal ecoclimate, which distinguishes this ecoregion from the warmer, drier areas to the south and the cooler boreal forests to the north. It also has a transitional grassland climate. Summers are brief and warm, and winters are cold and protracted. Mean annual temperature ranges from 0.5°C to 2.5°C; the mean summer temperature ranges from 13°C... More »
Ecoregions of Oklahoma (EPA) Last Updated on 2014-06-28 15:53:00 (ftp://ftp.epa.gov/wed/ecoregions/ok/ok_front.pdf) Ecoregions denote areas of general similarity in ecosystems and in the type, quality, and quantity of environmental resources. They are designed to serve as a spatial framework for the research, assessment, management, and monitoring of ecosystems and ecosystem components. By recognizing the spatial differences in the capacities and potentials of ecosystems, ecoregions stratify the environment by its probable response to disturbance (Bryce, Omernik, and Larsen, 1999). Ecoregions are general purpose regions that are critical for structuring and implementing ecosystem management strategies across federal agencies, state agencies, and nongovernment organizations that are responsible for different types of resources in the same geographical areas (Omernik and others, 2000). A Roman numeral hierarchical scheme... More »
Registan-North Pakistan sandy desert Last Updated on 2014-06-28 00:07:20 The Registan-North Pakistan sandy desert is an ecoregion spanning southern Afghanistan; the extreme eastern portion of Iran; part of northwest Pakistan, covering a total land area of approximately 107,100 square miles. This ecoregion is classifed within the Deserts and Xeric Shrublands biome. There is considerable vertebrate species richness within the Registan-North Pakistan sandy desert, although endemism among this group is only represented by five reptilian taxa. Situated in the southernmost portion fo Afghanistan, the far east of Iran and along part of the northwest Pakistan border area, this ecoregion is an arid element of the palearctic landscape. The Khash Desert is a major feature ot the ecoregion. The Registan-North Pakistan sandy desert includes: Zohary’s Iranian steppes of Artemisietea herbae-albae iranica east of the Kuh-e Gamsidzai and the Kuh-e Palangan;... More »