Wildlife of Planet Earth
Two-thirds ocean, one-third land. Variety of natural habitats with a lot of damage from the indigenous, human civilisation.
Planet Earth orbits a stable star at a relatively consistent distance. This produces surface temperatures that vary between approximately -20 and 40 degrees Celcius.
Water is an important resource, varying between solid (known as ice) and liquid form. Most of the known lifeforms on earth are completely reliant on water. Solid water floats on liquid water: for this reason life is able to survive in the oceans and lakes without being crushed by ice.
A year on earth is the time it takes to orbit once around the sun. The rotational axis is slightly tilted in its orbit: This causes seasonal fluctuations in climate because the sun better heats either the northern or southern hemisphere at different times of year. The indigenous population of humans call the warmest season summer and the coldest season winter. These annual changes cause some of the greatest wildlife spectacles as large numbers of animals move to avoid temperatures that are too hot or too cold for their survival.
This article is part of the Nature Travel Guide and was published on June 2017.
Even more articles including detailed site descriptions, illustrated wildlife-watching activities, self-guided walks, itinerary recommendations, birdwatching overviews and mammal-watching overviews are available in the premium eBooks.