Thursday, 2 June 2016

Yellowstone National Park

Yellowstone National Park

Jhon Delgado, Iñaki Murillo, Miriam Naranjo, Sergio Monroy.


Type of ecosystem that it represents:
Yellowstone has many types of ecosystems, but the dominant ecosystem is the sub-alpine forest, as most of the park is in the temperate zone.

Biotope:

Yellowstone National Park is located in the northwestern corner of the state of Wyoming, on the heart of the Rocky Mountains. However, Yellowstone also extends into Idaho and Montana. It's exact coordinates are 44°36′N 110°30′W

Yellowstone has a lithological volcanic original landform, created by the intense seismic activity of the area. In addition, the park is named Yellowstone after the yellow rocks that forms the Great Canyon of Yellowstone, created by the last glaciations. The canyon has been later eroded by the current of the Yellowstone River.
 A wrong hypothesis that many people do is that the yellow rocks that are common in the park are rich in Sulphur. However, the yellow color comes from rocks which contain iron that suffered some chemical changes due to the river flow and erosion.


Yellowstone's main features:
Geysers

Yellowstone is best known for its geysers, as the park lays on a volcanic bed. These geysers pump water which lays on the caldera to the surface. This water is heated because it is in contact with hot rocks and molten lava stored in the caldera. 


Hot Springs
These hot springs let off steam from geysers to go to the atmosphere, avoiding explosions inside them. By releasing carbon dioxide into the water stored near the hot springs, it dissolves some limestone rocks laid on the bed. When carbon precipitates, it forms some beautiful structures on the hot springs.  


The main types of rocks that are present on this park are:
Columnar basalt: it is a common grey-black volcanic rock formed when magma cools down.
Cretaceous shale: its is a dark fine sedimentary rock formed during the  cretaceous by several layers of clay silt or mud.
Siliceous sinter also called geyserite: it is a whitish rock found near geysers and hot springs.
Limestone: it is a sedimentary rock formed by aragonite and calcite which is found in the area of the Mammoth Hot Springs of Yellowstone.
Rhyolite: it is a light grey acidic volcanic rock which is similar to granite.
Tuff: its is formed by volcanic compact lava.


-The Mammoth Hot Springs.

Climate: 
 Yellowstone has four seasons. Yellowstone's climate is classified as humid continental because it rains all year round, but precipitation is more abundant during spring and fall. Temperatures during the summer are mild, while winters are very cold. Yellowstone's climate in mainly influenced by altitude, as in some places which are at higher altitudes temperatures are lower.
-During summer, temperatures during the day are warm, between 21ºC to 27ºC ºC but during nighttime, they can fall to around 0ºC at high altitudes.  Thunderstorms are very common during the afternoon.
-During spring and fall, the temperature ranges from -1ºC to 16ºC during the day. During the night the temperature falls sharply, reaching minimum temperatures from -5ºC to -20ºC.
-During the winter temperatures during the day and the night are freezing, being the maximum -5ºC during the day and the average temperature of the night -18ºC.
As a consequence oh having low temperatures almost all year round, it can snow during the whole year. Snow is mainly concentrated between the months of November and April, with an annual average of 3,800 mm.
 Precipitation is mainly focused during spring and fall, mainly during May (50.8 mm), being very scarce during February (19.05 mm). 


Yellowstone contains a high amount of animals. The most characteristic animals are the the gray wolf, the canadian lynx, and grizzly bears.  





Others representatives animals are:      
           
         Black bear,                           Elk,                            Moose,                            Mule,  




                 Deer,                    White-tailed deer,            Mountain goat,               Pronghorn,  












This natural park is very important because some of this animals are endangered, one example is the grey wolf which had been reintroduced for protecting the future of the species.Yellowstone host over 1700 species of native plants and 170 non-native  or exotic species. The 80% of the park is covered by coniferous trees, the most abundant one is the Lodgepole pine. The main characteristics of the park are:
 1.-Vegetation in Yellowstone is very similar to the one you can find in the Rocky Mountains.
2.-Contain elements from the Great Plains and Great Basin floras.
3.-Hydrothermal areas support unique plant communities and rare species that are very difficult to find in other places out of the park.

  

          Lodgepole pine,                                  Douglas fir,                                 Paintbrush, 














           Arrowleaf balsamroot, 



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