5 Colorful Things You Didn't Know About Tropical Forests!Jul 14 2020
The first part of our Tropical Collection focused on tropical forests - but how much do you really know about the tropics? Here are five colorful facts for you to ponder while you work on your pictures!
- Color is everywhere in the tropics - even the soil of a tropical forest is colorful! Rainforests have either ultisol or oxisol soils, both of which contain iron and aluminium which makes them red! This can vary from a reddish-brown to a very red red indeed!
- Red-eyed tree frogs, which are an iconic symbol of tropical forests, have - you guessed it - bright red eyes! The startling color actually helps them escape from predators - if the frog opens its eyes suddenly, the red confuses most other animals, giving the frog time to hop away to freedom! But that’s not all that’s colorful about these creatures - red-eyed tree frogs can also change the color of their bodies - depending on their mood, they can be bright green, dark green, or a reddish-brown.
- Why are there so many brightly-colored birds in the tropics? Well, there actually aren’t! Photographers focus on the birds that are brightly colored, so those are the ones most of us know about, but the ratio of bright colors versus ‘dull’ colors isn’t any higher in the tropics than it is anywhere else! There are many more ‘normal’ colored birds than there are vibrant ones.
- What you do get in the tropics are birds and beasties that are multi-colored, which is rarer in other environments. In the tropics, being multi-colored can help with camouflage - especially in birds, whose bright colors help them blend in when they fly around the tops of the canopy, where most of the light (and food!) is. It’s also a sign that those particular birds don’t have many predators. Animals with predators tend to be darker colors, which helps them hide in the shadows!
- We all feel like sloths on Monday mornings - but did you think they were brown? Think again! Sloths move so slowly that moss grows on them - they end up distinctly greenish in the wild! That’s okay though, because lots of bugs come to hang out in the moss - bugs that make for great sloth snacks! The moss also makes for excellent sloth-camo!
These are only some of the colorful facts about the incredible tropical forests on our planet. Next up, we’re diving into tropical waters! Check out part two of our Tropics Collection now!