Environment

Ecological Regions Of Russia

Ecological Regions Of Russia

The Russian Federation is the world’s largest country with an area of 17.1 million square kilometers. This is home to over 100 natural reserves, 40 UNESCO biosphere reserves, and 41 national parks. Russia's landscape consists of a large expanse of plains that are predominantly steppe and heavy forest. The mountain ranges of Russia are found on the southern border. The country has over a thousand rivers and inland water bodies. The humid continental climate dominates much of Russia except for tundra and extreme southeast. Russia is divided into several biomes forming different ecological regions including;

Aleutian Islands

The Aleutian Islands comprise of volcanic islands and smaller islands within the United States and Russia. The islands are part of the Aleutian Arc in the North of the Pacific Ocean. The Aleutian Islands are on the northern side of the Pacific Ring of Fire and they have were battle ground during the Aleutian Islands Campaign of the World War II. The islands were known as the Catherine Archipelago before 1867 and are categorized into five groups. The Aleutian Islands experience oceanic climate with moderate uniform temperatures and heavy rainfall. The islands are major habitats for large colonies of seabirds, vagrant Asiatic Birds, and several vertebrates. Most of the Aleutian Islands ecoregion is still intact except for the introduction species such as cattle and foxes which have increased competition with the wildlife for space and food.

Altai Alpine Meadow And Tundra

Altai alpine meadow and tundra divides the plains and the hills of the Western Siberia from the dry basins. The mountains forming part of the Altai alpine meadow and tundra have arctic characteristics because of their high latitude. The Atlai receives an annual precipitation higher than the mountain ranges of the Central Asia and has a low rate of evaporation because of the cold climate. The Altai Mountain Range represents a diverse biodiversity for both plants and animals. Fungi, mosses, and vascular plants dominate the ground cover. The mammals found in this ecoregion include the snow leopard, lynx, musk deer, and reindeer. 13 species of birds found in this ecoregion are listed in the Russia’s Red Data Book. Grazing and hunting are major threats to Altai alpine meadow and tundra ecoregion. However, much of the ecoregion remains intact due to the difficulty in accessing the region.

Altai Montane Forest And Forest Steppe

Altai montane forest and forest steppe lie between Siberia and the Mongolia steppe constituting the mid-elevation of the Altai-Sayan. The climate of the ecoregion is continental which is characterized by cold winter and warm summer. The mountain relief influences the microclimate and the temperature conditions. The ecoregion is dissected by Dip Rivers and their main tributaries. The ecoregion lies within different elevations ranging from 500 meters to 900 meters depending on the different environment parameters. The flora species of this ecoregion consist of over 800 species while some of the mammals found in this region include Martes zibellina, Talpa altaica, Vulpes vulpes, and Alces alces. The ecosystem of Altai montane forest and forest steppe has been disturbed significantly. Forests on the lower elevation have been cleared. However, large tracts of forest lie within the protected area thus they are difficult to access. Poaching is also a major threat to several fauna species in this ecoregion.

Ecological Regions Of Russia (as per World Wide Fund for Nature) Biome
Aleutian Islands Cold Temperate Northeast Pacific Marine
Altai alpine meadow and tundra Montane Grasslands and Shrublands
Altai montane forest and forest steppe Temperate Coniferous Forests
Amur meadow steppe Flooded Grasslands and Savannas
Arctic desert Tundra
Baltic Sea Temperate Northen Atlantic European Seas Marine
Beaufort Sea-continental coast and shelf Arctic Marine Realm
Bering tundra Tundra
Caspian lowland desert Deserts and Xeric Shrublands
Caucasus mixed forests Temperate Broadleaf and Mixed Forests
Cherskii-Kolyma mountain tundra Tundra
Chukchi Peninsula tundra Tundra
Chukchi Sea Arctic Marine Realm
Crimean Submediterranean forest complex Temperate Broadleaf and Mixed Forests
Da Hinggan-Dzhagdy Mountains conifer forests Temperate Coniferous Forests
Daurian forest steppe Temperate Grasslands, Savannas, and Shrublands
East European forest steppe Temperate Broadleaf and Mixed Forests
East Siberian Sea Arctic Marine Realm
East Siberian taiga Boreal Forests and Taiga
Eastern Bering Sea Arctic Marine Realm
Great Lakes Basin desert steppe Deserts and Xeric Shrublands
Kamchatka Mountain tundra and forest tundra Tundra
Kamchatka Shelf and Coast Cold Temperate Northwest Pacific Marine
Kamchatka-Kurile meadows and sparse forests Boreal Forests and Taiga
Kamchatka-Kurile taiga Boreal Forests and Taiga
Kara Sea Arctic Marine Realm
Kazakh forest steppe Temperate Grasslands, Savannas, and Shrublands
Kazakh steppe Temperate Grasslands, Savannas, and Shrublands
Khangai Mountains conifer forests Temperate Coniferous Forests
Kola Peninsula tundra Tundra
Laptev Sea Arctic Marine Realm
Mongolian-Manchurian grassland Temperate Grasslands, Savannas, and Shrublands
North and East Barents Sea Arctic Marine Realm
Northeast Siberian coastal tundra Tundra
Northeast Siberian taiga Boreal Forests and Taiga
Northern Honshu Cold Temperate Northwest Pacific Marine
Northern Norway and Finnmark Temperate Northen Atlantic European Seas Marine
Northwest Russian-Novaya Zemlya tundra Tundra
Novosibirsk Islands arctic desert Tundra
Okhotsk-Manchurian taiga Boreal Forests and Taiga
Pontic steppe Temperate Grasslands, Savannas, and Shrublands
Sakhalin Island taiga Boreal Forests and Taiga
Sarmatic mixed forests Temperate Broadleaf and Mixed Forests
Sayan Alpine meadows and tundra Montane Grasslands and Shrublands
Sayan Intermontane steppe Temperate Grasslands, Savannas, and Shrublands
Sayan montane conifer forests Temperate Coniferous Forests
Scandinavian and Russian taiga Boreal Forests and Taiga
Sea of Japan Cold Temperate Northwest Pacific Marine
Sea of Okhotsk Cold Temperate Northwest Pacific Marine
Selenge-Orkhon forest steppe Temperate Grasslands, Savannas, and Shrublands
South Sakhalin-Kurile mixed forests Temperate Broadleaf and Mixed Forests
South Siberian forest steppe Temperate Grasslands, Savannas, and Shrublands
Taimyr-Central Siberian tundra Tundra
Trans-Baikal Bald Mountain tundra Tundra
Trans-Baikal conifer forests Boreal Forests and Taiga
Urals montane tundra and taiga Boreal Forests and Taiga
Ussuri broadleaf and mixed forests Temperate Broadleaf and Mixed Forests
Ussuri-Wusuli meadow and forest meadow Flooded Grasslands and Savannas
West Siberian broadleaf and mixed forests Temperate Broadleaf and Mixed Forests
West Siberian taiga Boreal Forests and Taiga
White Sea Arctic Marine Realm
Wrangel Island arctic desert Tundra
Yamalagydanskaja tundra Tundra

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