However, trees inhale a little over half the oxygen they produce and the rest is probably used up by the microbes that live in the Amazon. So the net oxygen effect of the Amazon is actually around zero.
represents more than
half of the Earth's
It's the world's largest rainforest, with the Congo Rainforest and the Valdivian Temperate Rainforest coming up next. Tropical rainforests have been called the 'world's largest pharmacy', because over one quarter of natural medicines have been discovered there.
Tropical forests are important carbon sinks, and when they are destroyed carbon is released into the atmosphere, accelerating the rate of climate change. It is estimated that ending deforestation could reduce annual global greenhouse gas emissions by up to 30%.
It's also more than half the size of China, Canada and the United States.
The name Amazon is said to arise from a war that spanish conquistador Francisco de Orellana fought with the Tapuyas and other tribes.
The dust contains phosphorus, important for plant growth. The yearly Sahara dust replaces the equivalent amount of phosphorus washed away yearly in Amazon soil from rains and floods.
This is based on archaeological evidence from an excavation at Caverna da Pedra Pintada, Brazil.
The Amazon rainforest
has been in existence
for at least
The rainforest likely formed during the Eocene era. Scientists estimate it appeared following a global reduction of tropical temperatures when the Atlantic Ocean had widened sufficiently to provide a warm, moist climate to the Amazon basin.
1 in 10 known species in the world
Over 2,000 new species of plants and vertebrates, including a monkey that purrs like a cat, have been described since 1999.
This is not because the river would be too wide to bridge; for most of its length, engineers could build a bridge across the river easily. It's just that, most of the time, the crossing can be done by a ferry, so there is no need to build a bridge.
Geologists had speculated changes in convection within the Earth's mantle, perhaps resulting from the break-up of Africa and South America, must have driven this. Erosion might also explain it.
Almost four hundred billion trees
Analysis of data from 1170 surveys of the Amazon Basin and Guiana Shield also indicate there are about 400 billion trees.
The butterflies are likely attracted to the turtles' tears because the liquid drops contain salt, specifically sodium, an important mineral that is scant in the western Amazon.
Four nations have 'Amazonas' as the name of one of their first-level administrative regions and France uses the name 'Guiana Amazonian Park' for its rainforest protected area.
Unofficially named the 'Hamza', simulations suggest that at a higher depth of about 2,000 feet the river actually flows vertically.
While the Amazon Fund helped reduce deforestation in the Amazon region, overall deforestation in Brazil increased, which makes some wonder if the fund is just helping move deforestation elsewhere.
The flow rate at the mouth of the Amazon is sufficient to fill more than 83 such pools each second.
This is an estimation. Only a tiny fraction of this number have actually been described by scientists.
The biodiversity of plant species in the Amazon Rainforest is the highest on Earth.
Iquitos, Peru is the largest city in the world inaccessible by road. It's located deep in the Amazon rainforest and has over 400,000 people.
It's the largest metropolis in the Peruvian Amazon, east of the Andes, it is the ninth most populous city of Peru. The two largest cities in the whole Amazon basin are Manaus (1.4 million people) and Belém (1 million), both in Brazil.
The average plant biomass is estimated at 356 ± 47 tonnes per hectare.
Some estimate there are even more: about 77 groups are in Brazil alone, 12 to 15 in Peru, 6 to 10 in Bolivia, 3 to 5 in Colombia, 3 in Ecuador and 2 or 3 in Venezuela.