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What are the ecosystems of Colombia

Colombia is a rich and diverse country in terms of its ecosystems: Colombia is home to everything from mangroves and jungles to seagrass beds and moors. The Colombian ecosystems also provide a lot of useful services to nature and humans, among those included from acting as a carbon sink and prevent erosion of the ground to encourage tourism. However, many of these ecosystems are currently in danger or in critical condition.

Keep reading AgroCorrn to understand more about what are the ecosystems of Colombia and its exciting richness.

You may also be interested in: Natural regions of Colombia
  1. List of Colombian ecosystems
  2. Terrestrial ecosystems of Colombia
  3. Aquatic ecosystems of Colombia
  4. Ecosystems of Colombia in danger

List of Colombian ecosystems

In summary, the ecosystems of Colombia are the following:

Colombian terrestrial ecosystems

  • Sabana
  • We stopped
  • Tropical forests
  • Deserted zones

Colombian aquatic ecosystems

  • Coral reefs
  • Seagrass meadows
  • Pelagic ecosystem
  • Mangroves

In the following sections we describe the main Colombian ecosystems and their characteristics .

Terrestrial ecosystems of Colombia

Among the main Colombian terrestrial ecosystems are the following:


One of the terrestrial ecosystems of Colombia is the savannah. These are environments characterized by a great profusion of herbaceous species, grasses and legumes, which are combined with scattered trees (trupillo) or shrubs or in small groups. The climate in the savannah is warm with low rainfall, which, due to the composition of the soil, is usually evacuated by runoff, which means that there is almost no groundwater available. As examples we find the savannah of the Orinoquia and that of Bogotá. Some of the animals that inhabit this ecosystem are hawks, herons or pumas.

We stopped

The moors are typical mountain ecosystems. In Colombia it occurs in the Andean territory. The climate is cold and water is not always available, so the vegetation is predominantly herbaceous. You can find rabbits, curies, deer, voles, cougars or foxes.

Tropical forests

Tropical forests are characterized by their very high forest mass. The vegetation remains green throughout the year and the vegetation is highly developed. Both are usually found near the Equator (Pacific and Amazon), which makes the climate very little variable throughout the year, with high temperatures and a large amount of rainfall and high water saturation in the environment. The vegetation includes ferns, bananas and ceiba, and presents a large number of different animal species.

Deserted zones

Desert areas are characterized by very low rainfall and also very low water saturation in the environment. The different species that inhabit the area have characteristic adaptations that allow them to live in this extreme environment. For example, characteristic cacti are capable of storing water in their leaves. Organisms capable of living in these environments are called “xerophiles”. There are also animals, such as small reptiles and snakes, birds such as eagles, insects, arachnids, and other invertebrates. Two examples are La Guajira and Barranquilla.

In this other AgroCorrn article we show you everything about the desert ecosystem, its characteristics, flora and fauna .

Aquatic ecosystems of Colombia

These are the main aquatic Columbian ecosystems :

Coral reefs

Coral reefs are large barriers of sponges and polyps that are generally characterized by a very resistant structure of calcium carbonate, which ends up giving rise to very characteristic structures. They provide a large number of services: protection of the coastline, landscape resources and tourism, in addition to serving as food and support for a wide variety of fish. They are ecosystems that are not very resilient to changes. In Colombia the Rosario Islands are known for these formations.

Seagrass meadows

this other type of Colombian aquatic ecosystems are located near the coastline, in shallow waters (up to 25 meters). They are composed of large green algae that, through structures similar to the roots, are attached to the marine substrate. They constitute a source of food and a refuge for a multitude of animals, such as fish, snails, octopuses, starfish, etc. They also help prevent erosion of the coast by the action of currents. In Colombia they are present only on the Caribbean coasts, often associated with coral reef ecosystems.

Pelagic ecosystem

The term pelagic refers to what develops in the seawater body, when there is neither contact nor direct dependence on the bottom. The base of the food chain is microscopic algae, which depending on the depth at which they are located, will be of one type or another (this depends fundamentally on the amount and wavelength of the light they receive). These algae serve as food for small invertebrates, which in turn will be the basis of the diet of other invertebrates or of fish and marine mammals.


Mangroves are forests of trees adapted so that a part of their structure is in the water, in addition to having a great tolerance to salinity (vegetation that tolerates large concentrations of salt is called “halophyte”). The mangroves have the so-called “aerial roots”, which, curiously, come up from the substrate, and can rise above the water level in some cases. Mangroves are home to a large number of fauna and also provide important environmental services: they prevent coastal erosion, contribute to silt formation, and support a multitude of species of birds, fish, and various invertebrates.

This article will discover more about what a mangrove is and its characteristics .

Ecosystems of Colombia in danger

The report “Colombia Viva” of 2017 of the WWF organization [1] highlights the importance of monitoring biodiversity and the quality and quantity of ecosystem services provided by Colombian ecosystems , emphasizing the links between the health of ecosystems and human well-being.

According to this organization, of the total of large types of ecosystems in Colombia, 21% are in danger and 25% are in critical condition .

We show you some ideas so that you can help improve the state of these ecosystems and the entire planet in general in this other article on How to take care of the environment .

If you want to read more articles similar to What are the ecosystems of Colombia , we recommend that you enter our Ecosystems category .

Maria Anderson

Hello, I am a blogger specialized in environmental, health and scientific dissemination issues in general. The best way to define myself as a blogger is by reading my texts, so I encourage you to do so. Above all, if you are interested in staying up to date and reflecting on these issues, both on a practical and informative level.

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