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Atlantic climate: what is it, characteristics, flora and fauna

The Atlantic climate or also called oceanic climate, maritime climate or British climate , has a great influence from the ocean, since it is present on the western coasts of the continents. This influence is the trigger for the characteristics that represent the Atlantic climate and, therefore, responsible for the type of flora and fauna in the area.

In this AgroCorrn article we explain what the Atlantic climate is, its characteristics, flora and fauna , so if you are interested in discovering this type of climate, don’t miss the following lines that will bring you closer to it.

What is the Atlantic climate

The Atlantic climate, or also known by the names of British climate , oceanic climate and maritime climate , is mainly represented by mild temperatures and abundant rainfall, which occur because of the proximity that has this area with the Atlantic Ocean.

To learn more about this type of climate, we will talk about its characteristics, as well as the plants and animals of the Atlantic climate.

Characteristics of the Atlantic climate

The Atlantic or oceanic climate has the following characteristics:

  • Geographically it is distributed mainly by the western coastal areas of the continents, being found in countries such as (London) United Kingdom, (Bilbao and La Coruña) north of Spain, (Dublin) Ireland, in Canada, (Temuco) in the south of Chile, Bogotá (Colombia) and in southern Argentina.
  • Its proximity to the ocean causes abundant rainfall, well distributed throughout the year, although with a small decrease in the summer. The amount of rainwater that falls generally exceeds 1,000 mm per year, and on some occasions the rainfall can reach 2,000 mm.
  • In areas with an oceanic climate, winters are mild or cold and summers cool, although temperatures decrease in the territories closest to the poles.
  • It has a thermal amplitude between 10 and 15 ºC thanks to its proximity to the ocean and its thermoregulatory effect.
  • The temperatures that usually occur in winter are between 0-10 ºC and in summer they increase a little to 20-22 ºC. The fact that temperatures are not usually so low is also due to the proximity to the ocean.
  • The abundant and constant rainfall makes the rivers in these areas regular and mighty, such as the Seine river that passes through Paris or the Thames that passes through the city of London.
  • Morning fogs are very frequent due to high humidity levels. Relative humidity is greater than 75%, also making the presence of clouds in the sky constant.
  • The winds in the areas characterized by this climate are humid and come from the west, developing persistent rains when they come into contact with the earth’s surface.
  • The areas with an oceanic climate are ideal for the growth of pastures, which is why livestock farming is developed with the raising of cows and sheep.
  • It presents a large vegetation as a consequence of the great rainfall that does not allow soil erosion.

Flora of the Atlantic climate

The vegetation of the Atlantic climate is very varied and abundant thanks to the existing climatic conditions: mild temperatures and significant rainfall. In the areas where this climate is present, there are forests formed by deciduous trees, that is, they are trees that lose their leaves when winter arrives, to be able to re-sprout in the spring. Among the existing forests in this climate we find:

  • Mountainous forests: it is found in the areas with the highest altitude, thus differentiating itself from the lower areas.
  • Humid temperate forests: they are found at a medium altitude, and receive large amounts of water from rainfall.
  • Laurifolian forests: or temperate forest, located in humid areas, and sometimes presents small frosts, however in the absence of them, they are warm forests in which large trees develop.

Among the plants of the Atlantic climate, trees stand out and some of the species found in these forests are: beech ( Fagus sylvatica ), chestnut ( Castanea sativa ), tree ferns ( Dicksonia sellowiana ) or oak ( Quercus ) . In addition, extensive meadows also predominate, as long as the temperatures are not too low, and shrubs.

We recommend you read these other articles about the Atlantic Forest: what it is, characteristics, flora and fauna and also about How vegetation influences the climate .

Fauna of the Atlantic climate

The fauna of the Atlantic climate is very diverse thanks to the characteristics of this climate. Some of the species of animals of the Atlantic climate are:

  • Birds : seagulls, turtle doves, mallards, swallows, washerwomen, oystercatchers, kestrels, blueberries, greenfinches, hummingbirds or chickadees.
  • Mammals: the gray seal, the European otter, the minke whale, rodents, badgers, the red deer or the European deer, fallow deer, hedgehogs, rabbits, shrews, bears, wild boars, foxes, coyotes, squirrels and raccoons.
  • Reptiles : the woodworm snake, the green loggerhead snake, the striped cross rattlesnake, the viviparous lizard or the common European viper.
  • Fish: the basking shark, being the second largest fish in the world, there are also carp and rainbow trout.
  • Amphibians: the Andean marsupial frog, the Quito chete frog, the common newt, toads and crested newts.
  • Insects : butterflies, moths and spiders.

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