Karakoram Range ASia

Climate of the Karakoram Range in Asia

The average monthly precipitation does not exceed 9 inches. The lowest occurs in November at around .87 inches. The average annual precipitation is around 3 inches.

The warmest temperature is around 32 degrees Fahrenheit. The lowest temperatures are in the month of January where temperatures get down to -22 degrees Fahrenheit. The average annual temperature is approximately 9 degrees Fahrenheit.

At the top of the Karakoram Range it is cold all year long. The driest months tend to be from October to May. The wettest months tend to be from June to September.

Net Primary Productivity

The Karakoram Mountains are considered to be Alpine Tundra. It has one of the lowest net primary productivity of all the ecosystems (desert being the lowest). The approximate kilocalories per square meter per day is also one of the lowest. There is little growing season and less than 10 inches of rain per year. There is lots of ice and snow with a bumpy, sloped landscape. The Tundra covers around 20% of the earth. The latitude of the biome is located at 34 degrees North. The biome is not very diverse due to the harsh conditions required for suitable living.

Soil Quality

As you go up the mountains, the soil quality becomes less fertile. Towards the bottom, the Karakoram Mountains are good for double-cropping. The soil has permafrost and a short growing seasons. It can therefore be concluded that the soil can be classified as Gelisol (a classification of soil that contain permafrost, a layer of soil near the surface that is frozen year-round).

Invasive and Endangered

The Juniper is a an invasive plant found on the high slopes of the Karakoram Mountains. The plant is native to eastern North America from southeastern Canada to the Gulf of Mexico and east of the Great Plains. There are many uses for this plant which is why it could have been brought to Asia. It has helped with various medicinal purposes like helping with infections, wounds, and childbirth.
The snow leopard is an endangered species that lives in the Karakoram Range. Using HIPPCO, one reason for the endangerment of the snow leopard is habitat destruction. Humans have pushed ever further with their livestock into the snow leopard’s habitat. Overgrazing damages the fragile mountain grasslands, leaving less food for the wild sheep and goats that are the snow leopard’s main prey. With less food for the wild sheep and goats, there become fewer of these animals for the snow leopard. Another reason is over-exploitation. The bones, skin and organs of large cats are valuable in traditional Asian medicine. Tigers are the prefered species for this purpose, but tigers are so rare that it is almost impossible to find one in the wild so snow leopards are substituted for tigers.

Animals

The Ladakh urial is a wild sheep that inhabits the high, flatter mountains in the eastern range. The sheep stands tall at the shoulder with wide flaring heart shaped horns that curl deep down where they can reach 40 inches with one curl.
The Brown Bear has very thick fur and a layer of fat that helps them to endure the harsh conditions of cold and wind.
The Lynx has long whiskers which serve to send information about the surroundings directly to the cat’s sensory nerves, giving it a heightened sense of feeling and helping the cat to detect and respond to changes in its surroundings. Additionally, they have large, padded paws made for walking on snow.

Plants

The Poplar Tree can survive winter temperatures that fall down to minus 35 degrees F. These deciduous trees grow 40 to 60 feet tall and spread 35 to 50 feet wide. Poplar trees can grow up to 10 feet a year and are one of the fastest growing shade tree varieties. These trees can survive in clay or sandy soil which is yet another advantage to their survival.
The Dwarf Willow Tree have roots that are remarkable for their toughness, size, and tenacity to life, and roots that readily sprout from aerial parts of the plant.
The Himalayan Cedar is resistant to damage from deer and can with stain cold temperatures making it suitable for a mountain region.

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