From Academic Kids

The Neotropic ecozone is a terrestrial ecoregion which includes South America, Central America, and the Caribbean. It has distinct fauna and flora from the Nearctic because its long separation from the northern continent.

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The Neotropic Ecozone

This ecozone includes South and Central America, the Mexican lowlands, the Caribbean islands, and southern Florida, because these regions share a large number of plant and animal groups. It is sometimes used as a synonym for the tropical area of South America, although the ecozone also includes temperate southern South America.

The Neotropic includes more tropical rain forest (tropical moist broadleaf forest) than any other ecozone, extending from southern Mexico through Central America and northern South America to southern Brazil, including the vast Amazon Rainforest. These rainforest ecoregions are one of the most important reserves of biodiversity on Earth. Extensive deforestation in the late 20th century has reduced this diversity to a degree.

These rainforests also include the last Stone Age humans to have evaded contact with the rest of human modern civilization, and are a vast reservoir of human diversity as well; South America has over 400 indigenous languages in 37 distinct language families and over a dozen unique language isolates. Many of these languages and their cultures are also endangered. Accordingly, conservation in the Neotropic zone is a hot political concern, and raises many arguments about development versus aboriginal versus ecological rights to exist.

The temperate forest ecoregions of southwestern South America, including the temperate rain forests of the Valdivian temperate rain forests and Magellanic subpolar forests ecoregions, and the Juan Fernandez Islands and Desventuradas Islands, are a refuge for the ancient Antarctic flora, which includes trees like the southern beech (Nothofagus), podocarps, the alerce (Fitzroya cupressoides), and Araucaria pines like the monkey-puzzle tree (Araucaria araucana). These magnificent rainforests are endangered by extensive logging and their replacement by fast-growing non-native pines and eucalyptus.

South America was originally part of the supercontinent of Gondwana, which included Africa, Australia, India, New Zealand, and Antarctica, and the Neotropic shares many plant and animal lineages with these other continents, including Marsupial mammals and the Antarctic flora. After the final breakup of the Gondwana, South America drifted north and west, and was later joined with North America by the formation of the Isthmus of Panama, which allowed a biotic exchange between the two continents, the Great American Interchange. South American species like the ancestors of the Virginia Opossum (Didelphis virginiana) and the armadillo moved into North America, and North Americans like the ancestors of South America's camelids, including the llama (Lama glama), moved south. The long-term effect of the exchange was the extinction of many South American species, mostly by outcompetion by northern species.

31 bird families are endemic to the Neotropic ecozone, over twice the number of any other ecozone. They include rheas, tinamous, currasows, toucans.

Animal families originally unique to the Neotropic include:

Plant species originally unique to the Neotropic include:

Neotropic Terrestrial Ecoregions

Tropical and subtropical moist broadleaf forests
Araucaria moist forests (Argentina, Brazil)
Atlantic Coast restingas (Brazil)
Bahia coastal forests (Brazil)
Bahia interior forests (Brazil)
Bolivian Yungas (Bolivia, Peru)
Caatinga Enclaves moist forests (Brazil)
Caqueta moist forests (Brazil, Colombia)
Catatumbo moist forests (Venezuela)
Cauca Valley montane forests (Colombia)
Cayos Miskitos-San Andrés and Providencia moist forests (Colombia, Nicaragua)
Central American Atlantic moist forests (Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Panama)
Central American montane forests (El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua)
Chiapas montane forests (Mexico)
Chimalapas montane forests (Mexico)
Chocó-Darién Moist Forests (Colombia, Ecuador, Panama)
Cocos Island moist forests (Costa Rica)
Cordillera La Costa montane forests (Venezuela)
Cordillera Oriental montane forests (Colombia, Venezuela)
Costa Rican seasonal moist forests (Costa Rica, Nicaragua)
Cuban moist forests (Cuba)
Eastern Cordillera real montane forests (Colombia, Ecuador, Peru)
Eastern Panamanian montane forests (Colombia, Panama)
Fernanda de Noronha-Atol das Rocas moist forests (Brazil)
Guayanan highlands forests (Brazil, Colombia, Guyana, Suriname, Venezuela)
Guianan moist forests (Brazil, French Guiana, Guyana, Suriname, Venezuela)
Gurupa varzea (Brazil)
Hispaniolan moist forests (Dominican Republic, Haiti)
Iquitos varzea (Bolivia, Brazil, Peru)
Isthmian-Atlantic moist forests (Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Panama)
Isthmian-Pacific moist forests (Costa Rica, Panama)
Jamaican moist forests (Jamaica)
Japurá-Solimoes-Negro moist forests (Brazil, Colombia, Venezuela)
Juruá-Purus moist forests (Brazil)
Leeward Islands moist forests (Antigua, British Virgin Islands, Guadeloupe, Montserrat, Nevis, Saint Kitts, British Virgin Islands)
Madeira-Tapajós moist forests (Bolivia, Brazil)
Magdalena Valley montane forests (Colombia)
Magdalena-Urabá moist forests (Colombia)
Marajó varzea (Brazil)
Maranhão Babaçu forests (Brazil)
Mato Grosso tropical dry forests (Brazil)
Monte Alegre varzea (Brazil)
Napo Moist Forests (Colombia, Ecuador, Peru)
Negro-Branco moist forests (Brazil, Colombia, Venezuela)
Northeastern Brazil restingas (Brazil)
Northwestern Andean montane forests (Colombia, Ecuador)
Oaxacan montane forests (Mexico)
Orinoco Delta swamp forests (Guyana, Venezuela)
Pantanos de Centla (Mexico)
Paramaribo swamp forests (Guyana, Suriname)
Parañá-Paraíba interior forests (Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay)
Pernambuco coastal forests (Brazil)
Pernambuco interior forests (Brazil)
Peruvian Yungas (Peru)
Petén-Veracruz moist forests (Mexico)
Puerto Rican moist forests (Puerto Rico)
Purus varzea (Brazil)
Purus-Madeira moist forests (Brazil)
Rio Negro campinarana (Brazil, Colombia)
Santa Marta montane forests (Colombia)
Serra do Mar coastal forests (Brazil)
Sierra de los Tuxtlas (Mexico)
Sierra Madre de Chiapas moist forest (El Salvador, Guatemala, Mexico)
Solimões-Japurá moist forest (Brazil, Colombia, Peru)
South Florida rocklands (United States)
Southern Andean Yungas (Argentina, Brazil)
Southwest Amazon moist forests (Bolivia, Brazil, Peru)
Talamancan montane forests (Costa Rica, Panama)
Tapajós-Xingu moist forests (Brazil)
Tepuis (Brazil, Guyana, Suriname, Venezuela)
Tocantins-Araguaia-Maranhão moist forests (Brazil)
Trinidad and Tobago moist forests (Trinidad and Tobago)
Trinidade-Martin Vaz Islands tropical forests (Brazil)
Uatuma-Trombetas moist forests (Brazil, Guyana, Suriname)
Ucayali moist forests (Peru)
Venezuelan Andes montane forests (Colombia, Venezuela)
Veracruz moist forest (Mexico)
Veracruz montane forests (Mexico)
Western Ecuador moist forests (Colombia, Ecuador)
Windward Islands moist forests (Dominica, Grenada, Martinique, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines)
Xingu-Tocantins-Araguaia moist forests (Brazil)
Yucatán moist forests (Belize, Guatemala, Mexico)
Tropical and subtropical dry broadleaf forests
Apure-Villavicencio dry forests (Venezuela)
Atlantic Dry Forests (Brazil)
Bahamian dry forests (Bahamas)
Bajío dry forests (Mexico)
Balsas dry forests (Mexico)
Bolivian montane dry forests (Bolivia)
Cauca Valley dry forests (Colombia)
Cayman Islands dry forests (Cayman Islands)
Central American dry forests (Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua)
Chaco (Argentina, Bolivia, Paraguay)
Chiapas Depression dry forests (Guatemala, Mexico)
Chiquitano dry forests (Bolivia, Brazil)
Cuban dry forests (Cuba)
Ecuadorian dry forests (Ecuador)
Hispaniolan dry forests (Dominican Republic, Haiti)
Jalisco dry forests (Mexico)
Jamaican dry forests (Jamaica)
Lara-Falcón dry forests (Venezuela)
Leeward Islands dry forests (Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, Montserrat, Netherlands Antilles)
Magdalena Valley dry forests (Colombia)
Maracaibo dry forests (Venezuela)
Marañón dry forests (Peru)
Panamanian dry forests (Panama)
Patía Valley dry forests (Colombia)
Puerto Rican dry forests (Puerto Rico)
Revillagigedo Islands dry forests (Mexico)
Sierra de la Laguna dry forests (Mexico)
Sinaloan dry forests (Mexico)
Sinu Valley dry forests (Colombia)
Southern Pacific dry forests (Mexico)
Trinidad and Tobago dry forests (Trinidad and Tobago)
Tumbes-Piura dry forests (Colombia, Ecuador, Peru)
Veracruz dry forests (Mexico)
Windward Islands dry forests (Grenada, Martinique, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines)
Yucatán dry forests (Mexico)
Tropical and subtropical coniferous forests
Bahamian pine forests (Bahamas)
Belizian pine forests (Belize)
Central American pine-oak forests (El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua)
Cuban pine forests (Cuba)
Hispaniolan pine forests (Dominican Republic, Haiti)
Miskito pine forests (Honduras, Nicaragua)
Sierra de la Laguna pine-oak forests (Mexico)
Sierra Madre de Oaxaca pine-oak forests (Mexico)
Sierra Madre del Sur pine-oak forests (Mexico)
Trans-Mexican Volcanic Belt pine-oak forests (Mexico)
Temperate broadleaf and mixed forests
Juan Fernandez Islands temperate forests (Chile)
Magellanic subpolar forests (Argentina, Chile)
San Felix-San Ambrosio Islands temperate forests (Desventuradas Islands) (Chile)
Valdivian temperate rain forests (Argentina, Chile)
Tropical and subtropical grasslands, savannas, and shrublands
Arid Chaco (Argentina)
Beni savanna (Bolivia)
Campos Rupestres montane savanna (Brazil)
Cerrado woodlands and savannas (Bolivia, Brazil, Paraguay)
Clipperton Island shrub and grasslands (Clipperton Island is an overseas territory of France)
Córdoba montane savanna (Argentina)
Guyanan savanna (Brazil, Guyana, Venezuela)
Humid Chaco (Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay)
Llanos (Colombia, Venezuela)
Uruguayan savanna (Argentina, Brazil, Uruguay)
Temperate grasslands, savannas, and shrublands
Argentine Espinal (Argentina)
Argentine Monte (Argentina)
Humid Pampas (Argentina)
Patagonian grasslands (Argentina, Chile)
Patagonian steppe (Argentina, Chile)
Semi-arid Pampas (Argentina)
Flooded grasslands and savannas
Central Mexican wetlands (Mexico)
Cuban wetlands (Cuba)
Enriquillo wetlands (Dominican Republic, Haiti)
Everglades (United States)
Guayaquil flooded grasslands (Ecuador)
Orinoco wetlands (Venezuela)
Pantanal (Bolivia, Brazil, Paraguay)
Paraná flooded savanna (Argentina)
Southern Cone Mesopotamian savanna (Argentina)
Montane grasslands and shrublands
Central Andean dry puna (Argentina, Bolivia, Chile)
Central Andean puna (Argentina, Bolivia, Peru)
Central Andean wet puna (Bolivia, Peru)
Cordillera Central páramo (Ecuador, Peru)
Cordillera de Merida páramo (Venezuela)
Northern Andean páramo (Colombia, Ecuador)
Santa Marta páramo (Colombia)
Southern Andean steppe (Argentina, Chile)
Zacatonal (Mexico)
Mediterranean forests, woodlands, and shrub
Chilean Matorral (Chile)
Deserts and xeric shrublands
Araya and Paria xeric scrub (Venezuela)
Aruba-Curaçao-Bonaire cactus scrub (Aruba, Bonaire, Curaçao)
Atacama desert (Chile, Peru)
Caatinga (Brazil)
Cayman Islands xeric scrub (Cayman Islands)
Cuban cactus scrub (Cuba)
Galápagos Islands xeric scrub (Ecuador)
Guajira-Barranquilla xeric scrub (Colombia, Venezuela)
La Costa xeric shrublands (Venezuela)
Leeward Islands xeric scrub (Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, British Virgin Islands, Guadeloupe, Saint Martin, Saint Barthelemy, Saba, US Virgin Islands)
Malpelo Island xeric scrub (Colombia)
Motagua Valley thornscrub (Guatemala)
Paraguana xeric scrub (Venezuela)
San Lucan xeric scrub (Mexico)
Sechura desert (Peru)
Tehuacán Valley matorral (Mexico)
Windward Islands xeric scrub (Barbados, Dominica, Grenada, Martinique, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines)
Saint Peter and Saint Paul rocks (Brazil)

Alvarado mangroves (Mexico)
Amapa mangroves (Brazil)
Bahamian mangroves (Bahamas, Turks and Caicos Islands)
Bahia mangroves (Brazil)
Belizean Coast mangroves (Belize)
Belizean Reef mangroves (Belize)
Bocas del Toro-San Bastimentos Island-San Blas mangroves (Costa Rica, Panama)
Coastal Venezuelan mangroves (Venezuela)
Esmeraldes-Pacific Colombia mangroves (Colombia, Ecuador)
Greater Antilles mangroves (Cuba, Dominican Republic, Haiti, Jamaica, Puerto Rico)
Guianan mangroves (French Guiana, Guyana, Suriname, Venezuela)
Gulf of Fonseca mangroves (El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua)
Gulf of Guayaquil-Tumbes mangroves (Ecuador, Peru)
Gulf of Panama mangroves (Panama)
Ilha Grande mangroves (Brazil)
Lesser Antilles mangroves (Lesser Antilles)
Magdalena-Santa Marta mangroves (Colombia)
Manabí mangroves (Ecuador)
Maranhao mangroves (Brazil)
Marismas Nacionales-San Blas mangroves (Mexico)
Mayan Corridor mangroves (Mexico)
Mexican South Pacific Coast mangroves (Mexico)
Moist Pacific Coast mangroves (Costa Rica, Panama)
Mosquitia-Nicaraguan Caribbean Coast mangroves (Costa Rica, Honduras, Nicaragua)
Northern Dry Pacific Coast mangroves (El Salvador, Guatemala)
Northern Honduras mangroves (Guatemala, Honduras)
Pará mangroves (Brazil)
Petenes mangroves (Mexico)
Piura mangroves (Peru)
Ría Lagartos mangroves (Mexico)
Rio Negro-Rio San Sun mangroves (Costa Rica, Nicaragua)
Rio Piranhas mangroves (Brazil)
Rio São Francisco mangroves (Brazil)
Southern Dry Pacific Coast mangroves (Costa Rica, Nicaragua)
Tehuantepec-El Manchon mangroves (Mexico)
Trinidad mangroves (Trinidad and Tobago)
Usumacinta mangroves (Mexico)

Template:Terrestrial biomes

Afrotropic | Antarctic | Australasia | Indomalaya | Nearctic | Neotropic | Oceania | Palearctic

External link

it:Regione neotropicale ja:新熱帯区


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