Planning a summer trip to South America this year? Do not miss out on visiting the Amazon Rainforest. We bring to you 10 unknown and amazing facts about the Amazon Rainforest that will further excite you to visit this massively beautiful forest.
1. The Amazon Rainforests were formed more than 15 million years ago, when the great Andes mountain ranges began to rise upwards. The Amazonian area Is believed to have been an inland sea initially. Later this inland sea became a marshy, swampy land mass leading to inhabitation of early forms of marine species and plants. Gradually, it took form of the massive rainforest visible today.
2. The Amazon Rainforest is the world’s largest tropical rainforest in the world. It covers over 5.5 million square feet and is spread across 9 South American countries – Brazil, Bolivia, Peru, Ecuador, Colombia, Venezuela, Guyana, Suriname and French Guyana.If Amazon Rainforest was a country, it would be the 9th largest in the world – just behind Kazakhstan and India in terms of land area coverage.
3. The Rainforest is home to one of the longest rivers in the world – Amazon at close to 7,000 km in length. In comparison, India’s longest river Ganga dwarfs in comparison as it is just around 2,500 km long.
4. The Amazon Rainforest is also popularly known as the ‘lungs of the Earth’, as it is the single largest source of oxygen on our planet. It produces over 20% of the total oxygen present on Earth!
5. The rainforests are so deep and dense that till date no one has explored the whole area completely. It is believed that certain indigenous tribes of people, collectively known as the Amazonians, still reside within the forests in a secluded state. They have never been in contact with the outside world for many centuries.
6. It is very dark inside the Amazon Rainforest due to presence of thick canopies of large trees. Roughly 1-2% of all sunlight can penetrate through the canopies and reach the floor area.
7. The Amazon is home to an incredibly huge variety of flora and fauna. By some estimates, there exist over 40,000 species of plants, 1,300 bird species, 3,500 fish and other underwater species, more than 400 types of mammals and millions of different insects. Scientists are still discovering more inhabitants of this rich ecosystem with each passing day.
8. The Amazonian Rainforest produces close to 3,000 varieties of fruits, however only 200-250 varieties are commercially exported to other parts of the world.
9. Almost 25% of supplies used in drugs produced byglobal pharmaceutical companies can trace their source ingredients from Amazon Rainforest.
10. Amazon Rainforests are one of the largest sources of timber – used in manufacturing furniture and other wooden products. As a result, the forest has witnessed massive deforestation in the last few decades. It is estimated that around the rainforest coverage is decreasing by 1.5 acres every second. At the current rate, the rainforests could be completely destroyed in the next 40 years!
Hope we have succeeded in satiating your inquisitiveness about this amazing Amazon rainforest by throwing light on these 10 unknown facts. So, prep yourself accordingly and plan an exciting trip to this mesmerizing rainforest.