2 KEY CONCEPT Climate is a key abiotic factor that affects the biosphere. Climate is the prevailing weather of a region.Earth has three main climate zones.
3 Climate is the prevailing weather of a region. Climate is the long-term pattern of weather conditions.average temperatureprecipitationrelative humidityKey factors shape an area’s climate.temperaturesunlightwaterwind
4 Within a specific region, climate conditions vary Within a specific region, climate conditions vary. A microclimate is the climate of a small specific place within a larger area.Ex: a small hole in a decaying log where mushrooms growEx: City neighborhoodSan Francisco-fog, cool temps
5 Earth has three main climate zones. Scientists use average temperature and precipitation levels to categorize a region’s climate.The three main zones are the polar, tropical, and temperate climates.polar climate: the far northern and southern regions of Earthtropical zone: surrounds the equatortemperate zone: the wide area in between the polar and tropical zones
6 The angle of the Sun’s rays help determine an area’s climate. temperatepolartropical90 N
7 Earth’s tilt on its axis plays a role in seasonal change. As Earth orbits the sun, areas receive varying amounts of sunlightSolar heating causes movements in both water and air.windocean currentsEarth’s rotation also has effects on the winds and currents
8 Oceans shape coastal climates. Landmasses shape inland climates.larger changes in temperatures when compared to coastal areasless precipitationOceans shape coastal climates.smaller changes in temperatureshigher humiditymore precipitation
9 Mountains have an effect on climate. Precipitation occurs on the side of the mountain facing the wind.On the downwind side, drier and cooler air produce a rain shadow.A rain shadow is an area of decreased precipitation.western slopeeastern slope
10 Many organisms survive in a specific climate due to their adaptations. Example: Water-holding frog lives in dry grasslands and deserts of inland Australia (rainy season once a year). Dry periods can last 20 months or more. This frog burrows underground where water evaporates more slowly. They come out of their burrows to mate during the rainy season.