Amazon Rainforest Facts

The Amazon rainforest is a moist broadleaf forest located in South America. This rainforest is so huge that it covers nine countries: Brazil, Peru, Colombia, Venezuela, Ecuador, Bolivia, Guyana, Suriname, France (French Guiana).

The region, also know as Amazonia or the Amazon Jungle, represents over half of the planet's remaining rainforests with an estimated 390 billion individual trees divided into 16,000 species.

Below are some of the facts about Amazon Rainforest:

  • The Amazon Rainforest is the biggest rainforest of the world that is spread over an area of 5,500,000 square kilometers (2,123,562 squre miles).
  • The total area over which it is covers would had been the ninth largest country in the world but it is spread across nine different countries.
  • 60% of the Amazon Rainforest is in Brazil, followed by Peru with 13%, Colombia with 10%, and the rest spread in Venezuela, Ecuador, Bolivia, Guyana, Suriname and French Guiana.
  • The Amazon rainforest is known as the lungs of the Earth for it green trees contributes to the production of oxygen on the Earth surface.
  • The forest is best examples of natural vegetation diversity with more than 40,000 plant species, 1,300 bird species, and 3000 types of fishes, 430 mammals and about 2.5 million types of insects present over there.
  • The rainforest hosts the most fascinating and deadly animals existing on the earth. There are electric eels, poison dart frogs, flesh eating piranhas, jaguars and dangerous venomous snakes.
  • It is not land of birds and animals only as human also inhabits the place. There are almost 400 to 500 Amerindians tribes living out there.
  • Among them there are about 50 tribes out there who still do not have any contact with the modern world.
  • The river Amazon flows through the rainforest and thus this name was given. The Spanish explorer Francisco Orellana gave the name Amazon.
  • The trees in the rainforest are huge making the floor of the forest almost dark. Very little light reaches the ground even on a very sunny day.
  • On any rainy day it takes about 10 minutes for the first rain drop to reach the ground!
  • Geologists have found that after the rise of Andes, River Amazon has changed its course of flowing. Once it flowed west ward and now it flows east ward into the Atlantic Ocean.
  • Among the various fascinating animals found in the rainforest one is the Pirarucu that is also known as the arapaima or paiche. This fish is a meat eater fish and guzzles up other fishes.
  • Deforestation is a big issue in the Amazon Rainforest as about 130 species gets extinct every day due to this.
  • Controls are taken to slow down the rate of deforestation as if this rate continues the forest will get extinct in next few decades.
  • Many plants that grows in this rain forest have medicinal properties. About 70% of the plants with anti-cancer properties are found in this region. The natives use local herbs for treatment but most of it is still unknown to modern science.