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What is terrestrial habitat: definition, types and animals

The flora and fauna that coexist with humans on Earth have evolved over millions of years to adapt to the different habitats that exist in nature. Among them we can find species that survive only and exclusively in terrestrial habitats, or on the contrary in marine or inland water habitats.

In this way, the quantity and diversity of habitats that we can find throughout the planet is very varied. In this AgroCorrn article we will focus on what the terrestrial habitat is, its definition, types and animals . We will also provide different examples of terrestrial habitats to be able to learn more about their main characteristics and also discover the differences that exist between them, as well as the animals that live in them.

You may also be interested in: What is the habitat
  1. Definition of terrestrial habitat
  2. Terrestrial habitat types – examples
  3. Terrestrial habitat animals

Definition of terrestrial habitat

The terrestrial habitat is the place where different species of plants and animals live on the earth’s surface (geosphere) . The main characteristic of these habitats is the presence of oxygen in the atmosphere and the possibility of sudden changes in temperature and other meteorological phenomena.

Each terrestrial habitat has a series of characteristics that make it suitable for the survival of the species that coexist in it. These characteristics are determined by the climate of the region, as well as by other physical factors (such as the relief of mountains and mountain ranges) and chemical factors, such as the composition of the soil.

On the other hand, human intervention is also very representative when studying the different terrestrial habitats, since depending on the level of intervention in the nature of the human being we can find habitats that maintain their most primitive and natural characteristics or, on the contrary , artificial habitats that have been modified or created for a specific purpose.

It is important to differentiate the term habitat from other concepts used in ecology, such as ecosystems or biotope. In these other AgroCorrn articles you can learn to differentiate these and other common terms in the world of ecology:

Terrestrial habitat types – examples

In each region of the world, the types of terrestrial habitats that we can find present diverse climatological, environmental and geographical characteristics that allow us to differentiate them from each other. To get to know them more closely, let’s put some examples of the different types of terrestrial habitats :

Deserts and savannas

With an arid climate and little rainfall, desert and savanna habitats have little vegetation and the presence of nocturnal animals that hide during the day to avoid high temperatures. We can find extensive deserts both in America (the Atacama desert, between Chile, Argentina, Bolivia and Peru), as well as in Africa (the well-known acacia savannas of East Africa), Asia (the Gobi desert, between the north of China and the south Mongolia) and Oceania (Gibson Desert in Western Australia).


With abundant vegetation and the predominance of trees, the forests are the habitat of numerous terrestrial animals that find shelter and food among the plants. The dense forests of boreal regions such as Finland stand out, as well as temperate forests (Pyrenees and Alps in Europe) and sub- and tropical forests, such as the imposing Amazon.


Also known as grasslands or steppes, grasslands are a temperate scrub habitat where many species of herbivores graze. The Patagonian steppe in Argentina stands out, as well as the Northern Prairies in the United States and the Dauria Steppe located east of Lake Baikal, in Russia.

Mountains and plateau

The altitude and slopes that characterize them make the animals and plants that inhabit them adapted to their reliefs. Among the most amazing mountainous habitats in the world are the Himalayas (Asia) and the Alpamayo (South America).

Let’s see in the next section which animals live in these types of terrestrial habitats.

Terrestrial habitat animals

All animals in the terrestrial habitat are characterized by the need to obtain oxygen for respiration, which is carried out through the lungs. Their diet is based on the acquisition of plants or other animals. In this way, we can find within the animals of terrestrial habitat, both small invertebrate animals , such as arthropods and mollusks, as well as vertebrates belonging to the groups of mammals, birds, amphibians and reptiles.

Among them, we can highlight the large mammals that inhabit deserts and savannas such as:

  • Elephant
  • The giraffe
  • The zebras
  • The Lions

In this other post you can learn more about the general characteristics of land mammals .

We also highlight impressive birds of prey or prey , whose aerial-terrestrial habitat is located in mountains and plateaus:

  • The Hawks
  • The Eagles
  • The condors
  • The Owls
  • Owls

Here you can learn more about aerial Animals, their types and names with images .

As for the animals of terrestrial habitat that coexist in forests around the world, we can highlight arthropods and mollusks such as:

  • Tarantulas
  • Centipedes
  • Land snails
  • Land slugs

Regarding the animals of the prairie habitat :

  • Horses
  • The sheep
  • Cows
  • The prairie dogs
  • Foxes
  • Weasels

In this other AgroCorrn article we show you more Prairie Animals .

If you want to read more articles similar to What is terrestrial habitat: definition, types and animals , we recommend that you enter our Ecosystems category .

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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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