By: Chantal Tavitian
Amrita Gill
Ashley Barberio
Allie Ordonez
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The tundra is an extremely cold and dry biome.There are two types
of tundra in the world, Arctic and Alpine.Tundra comes from the
Finnish word tunturi, meaning treeless plain.This biome lies above
the Arctic Ocean in the world's highest northern latitudes. The tundra covers about 1/5
of the lands surface. The tundra is found in "Northern Europe,Siberia,Northern part of North America,
and a few places in the southern hemisphere."

Plants and Animal Species:

Plants in the tundra are mosses, grasses, shrubs, and small trees.
Most plants grow during the summer. In the tundra, there is a short season
of growth and reproduction. Animals in the tundra include caribou, foxes,
wolves, and arctic hares. Birds migrate south during the winter. The tundra
is filled with thick-rooted perennials and prostrate shrubs.
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The arctic hare is very big. They are 18 to 25 inches long
and weigh about 12 pounds. It wanders throughout the tundra
because the arctic hare is trying to avoid the deep snow. The
arctic hare must be aware of its predator which include the
arctic fox, the weasel, snowy owl, and the lynx

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The arctic fox lives in cold harsh weathers farther north
than any other fox. It can't hunt lemming that they can't
see beneath the snow, but if it can't kill enough it will
settle for any leftovers of animals. This is a good habitat
for the fox because of its warm fur of any mammal. It is
even warmer than the polar bear and the arctic fox.
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Caribou are well adapted to the extreme weather
conditions in the tundra.They are able to sleep in water.
A reason why a caribou is always moving its location is
because the flies really bother them and also because
the thing the eat called lichen it takes years to
grow back.

Energy Flow:

Diagram of Tundra Food Web
Diagram of Tundra Food Web

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Similar to most biomes, energy enters the tundra from sunlight. Only a
few species live in the tundra environment. Permafrost under the ground
makes water drainage impossible thats why the ground is soggy and
has small lakes and puddles. In the winter when the water freezes it
becomes unavailable to life form, and plants and animals may die or thirst.


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The tundra receives no more precipitation than a desert. There are shallow
ponds and marshy areas on the tundra during the summer. Only about
6-10 inches of rain fall each year.


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  • Extremely short growing season (6 to 10 weeks)
  • Long, cold, dark winters (6 to 10 months with mean monthly temperatures below 32° F or 0° C.)
  • Low precipitation (less than five inches/year) coupled with strong, drying winds.
  • Winters average temperature goes up to -18°F and can drop to -94°F
  • Summers average temperature goes up to 54°F and can drop to 34°F


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The tundra is the coldest region in the world. The tundra has a short summer
that lasts from May to July. During the summer, the temperature only rises to
about 50 degrees Farenheit. Winters are dark, cold, and long. The average
yearly temperature is only 10 to 20 degrees Farenheit. It gets so cold that even
the sea freezes.


Arctic Tundra

Like in other biomes, plants in the tundra need sunlight to grow. The growth of plants
and other living organisms depends on the sunlight that reaches the tundra. In the
winter, the tundra receives little sunlight. In the summer, the sun shines all night.
In the Arctic Tundra, the limited amount of sunlight it receives is due to the position
of the sun in the sky. Depending on latitude, the sun can remain below the horizon
for about 2 months, leaving the Arctic Tundra in darkness. Although, during the
summer, the sun remains in the sky 24 hours a day, it stays close to the horizon
and only provides low in intensity sunlight.

Alpine Tundra
Things are very similar just like the Arctic Tundra. In a Alpine Tundra
it has a freeze-thaw layer but no permafrost. Because Arctic Tundra's receive
very long periods of daylight and darkness, biological rhythms tend to be more
adjusted to variations in temperature than to variations in sunlight.

Work Cited:

  • "Alpine Biome." Blue Planet Biomes. 5 Mar. 2008
  • "THE ARCTIC HARE." University of Chicago Laboratory Schools. 5 Mar. 2008

"World Builders: A Food Web in the Tundra Biome E Viau CSULA." Index of /. 9 Mar. 2008 http://curriculum.calstatela.edu/courses/builders/lessons/less/biomes/tundra/tundraweb.html. Tundra 3." Thurston High School Springfield Oregon. 9 Mar. 2008 <http://ths.sps.lane.edu/biomes/tundra3/tundra3.html>.
Ruth, Maria . the tundra. New York: Benchmark Books, 1999.