As the rainforest is called forests, which are characterized by a particularly humid climate due mostly more than 2000 mm of rainfall (annual average ). Because of the radically different climate conditions are categorized according to the climates between the rain forests of the tropics and the rain forests of the temperate latitudes.

Tropical rainforests

Evergreen, tropical rainforests arose on every continent, on both sides of the equator to about the 10th degree of latitude, especially in South America, and Oceania but also significantly beyond. The largest contiguous area - at the same time more than half the total area of ​​tropical rain forests - is located in the area of the Amazon basin. Other major rainforests have the Congo Basin and Indonesia.

The term tropical rainforest featuring an ecosystem that includes a variety of forest types: one is the lowland rainforest to about 800 m altitude, on the other hand the mountain rain forest to about 1500 m altitude and finally the cloud forest beyond 2000 m altitude. Occasionally, further distinctions are made in the literature for specific regions, such as " cloud forest " for the back of the Northern Coastal Cordillera in Venezuela.

Monsoon forests

In Asia, the rain forests are influenced by the prevailing monsoon climate there. Since the rainy seasons are there regularly replaced by dry periods, the conditions are less balanced than in the tropical rain forest. The annual rainfall is therefore lower.

Rain forests of the temperate latitudes

Temperate rainforest is found mainly on the west coast of North America, in Chile and in Tasmania and New Zealand. The delimitation of the tropical rain forest is given by its location in the temperate climates.