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microclimate

microclimate The atmospheric characteristics prevailing within a small space, usually in the layer near the ground that is affected by the ground surface. Special influences include the impact of vegetation cover on humidity (by evapotranspiration) and on temperature and winds. See also URBAN CLIMATES.

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microclimate

microclimate The atmospheric characteristics prevailing within a small space, usually in the layer near the ground that is affected by the ground surface. Special influences include the impact of vegetation cover on humidity (by evapotranspiration) and on temperature and winds. See also urban climates.

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"microclimate." A Dictionary of Ecology. . Encyclopedia.com. 25 Sep. 2018 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

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microclimate

microclimate The atmospheric characteristics prevailing within a small space, usually in the layer near the ground that is affected by the ground surface. Special influences include the impact of vegetation cover on humidity (by evapotranspiration) and on temperature and winds.

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"microclimate." A Dictionary of Plant Sciences. . Encyclopedia.com. 25 Sep. 2018 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

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microclimate

microclimate The local climate of a small area or of a particular habitat, which is different from the macroclimate of the larger surrounding geographical area.

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"microclimate." A Dictionary of Biology. . Encyclopedia.com. 25 Sep. 2018 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

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microclimate

microclimate The climate of a microhabitat.

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"microclimate." A Dictionary of Zoology. . Encyclopedia.com. 25 Sep. 2018 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

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Microclimate

Microclimate

Climate is the set of characteristic temperatures, humidities, sunshine, winds, and other weather conditions that prevail over large areas of space for long periods of time. The word climate is derived from the Greek klima, which refers to the inclination of the sun. Although the suns inclination is a major consideration in climate, other things such as terrain, distance from large water bodies, elevation, mountain systems, and other considerations are also considered. Another important consideration is the scale of climate. Macroclimate refers to a large region. Microclimate refers to a climate that holds over a very small area. For example, a microclimate could be as small as the artificial area created within a greenhouse or the natural area beneath a large redwood tree in California.

Microclimates usually are slight modifications of the main background climate altered by features in the landscape. A forest creates a microclimate within the canopy of trees that is cooler, wetter, and has altered soil chemistry compared to the area outside the forest. The altered climate found within forests can support organisms that cannot survive in the surrounding grassland. Similarly a large city has altered wind flows due to the presence of tall buildings, increased overall temperatures, and a very different type of ground cover than the surrounding plains. All these factors contribute to a microclimate characteristic of an urban area. Microclimates frequently support unique ecosystems. Mountain meadows, river valleys, tidal marshes, and crop lands have one or several microclimates that help determine the amount and type of organisms that thrives in these locations.

Microclimates are parts of a complex web of climates that exist on Earth. The general global climate of Earth can be thought of as a collection of many smaller scale climates that coexist like patches in a quilt. These subclimates are further divided into smaller scale climates each with its own distinctive features. For example, the continent-wide climate of North America, called the macroclimate, is distinctly different than that of South America. Within the North American macroclimate are several distinct mesoclimates, which extend over distances much smaller than the continent. These include plains, mountains, and deserts. Making up each of these mesoclimates are smaller climate zones called local climates. Some distinct local climates are forests, croplands, and large cities. The smallest scale sub-climate is the microclimate defined as the climate that holds over a distance (in any direction) of less than 328 ft (100 m). Distinct microclimates include a small cornfield, a forest clearing, and the canyon formed by several tall city office buildings. Microclimates thus form the smallest building blocks of the overall global climate.

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Microclimate

Microclimate

In general, climate conditions near the ground are called microclimates. More specifically, microclimate refers to the climate characteristics of highly localized areas, ranging from the area around an individual plant to a field of crops or a small forested area. The horizontal area considered may be less than one square meter or up to several thousands of square meters. The vertical extent may range from a few centimeters involving the still layers of air within a plant canopy, for instance, to 100 meters or more, when the atmosphere surrounding a forested area is studied.

Microclimates are governed to a large extent by the interactions of surface features with the overlying atmosphere, and their characteristics may differ markedly from those of the surrounding large-scale climate. Microclimates exhibit great ranges in environmental conditions depending on the moisture and radiation properties of the surface. They typically show large diurnal temperature ranges and are highly influenced by slope, aspect, and elevation. Most plants and animals are adapted to highly specific microclimatic conditions.

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Microclimate

Microclimate

Climate is the set of characteristic temperatures, humidities, sunshine, winds, and other weather conditions that prevail over large areas of space for long periods of time . Microclimate refers to a climate that holds over a very small area. Microclimates usually are slight modifications of the main background climate altered by features in the landscape. A forest creates a microclimate within the canopy of trees which is cooler, wetter, and has altered soil chemistry compared to the area outside the forest. The altered climate found within forests can support organisms that cannot survive in the surrounding grassland. Similarly a large city has altered wind flows due to the presence of tall buildings, increased overall temperatures, and a very different type of ground cover than the surrounding plains. All these factors contribute to a microclimate characteristic of an urban area. Microclimates frequently support unique ecosystems. Mountain meadows, river valleys, tidal marshes, and crop lands have one or several microclimates which help determine the amount and type of organisms that thrives in these locations.

Microclimates are parts of a complex web of climates that exist on Earth . The general global climate of Earth can be thought of as a collection of many smaller scale climates that coexist like patches in a quilt. These subclimates are further divided into smaller scale climates each with its own distinctive features. For example the continent-wide climate of North America , called the macroclimate, is distinctly different than that of South America . Within the North American macroclimate are several distinct mesoclimates which extend over distances much smaller than the continent . These include plains, mountains , and deserts. Making up each of these mesoclimates are smaller climate zones called local climates. Some distinct local climates are forests, croplands, and large cities. The smallest scale sub-climate is the microclimate defined as the climate that holds over a distance (in any direction) of less than 328 ft (100 m). Distinct microclimates include a small cornfield, a forest clearing, and the canyon formed by several tall city office buildings. Microclimates thus form the smallest building blocks of the overall global climate.

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