Chapter 9 Life in the Temperate Grasslands
1. Answer the following questions briefly.
- What are the Temperate Grasslands of North America called?
- What are the cattle farms in the North American Grasslands known as?
- Name the rivers that drain the velds.
- When is the rainy season in the Velds.
- What is the major occupation of the people of the South African grasslands?
- The Temperate Grasslands of North America are called Prairies.
- The cattle farms in the North American grasslands are known as Ranches.
- The names of the rivers which drain the velds are:
- River Orange
- River Limpopo
- Their tributaries.
- The rainy season in the velds is from November to February.
- The major occupation of the people of the South African grasslands is Sheep Rearing.
2. Tick the correct answer:
(a) River Mississippi drains
(i) Canada(ii) Africa(iii) USA.
(b) Drakensberg Mountainsare to the west of
(i) Prairies(ii) Velds(iii) Pampas.
(c) Merino is a species of
(i) Fish(ii) Elephant(iii) Sheep.
(d) Kimberley is famous for
(i) diamonds (ii)silver (iii) platinum.
Answer: (a)—(iii), (b)—(ii), (c)—(iii),(d)—(i)
3. Match the following:
(i) Comboys (a)Iron and Steel
(ii) Gold (b)Prairies
(iii) Kudu (c)Hot wind
(iv) Chinook (d)Velds
(v) Coal (e)Johannesberg (f)Animal
Answer: (i)—(b), (ii)—(e), (iii)—(f), (iv)—(c), (v)—a
4. Give reasons:
- The Prairies are known as the ‘Granaries of the world’.
- Rise of the wool industry in the Velds.
- The Prairies are known as the ‘Granaries of the World’ because of the following reasons:
- Prairies grasslands have been cleared and wheat is grown extensively on these plains.
- The use of tractors, harvesters, etc. and modem technologies have made the wheat production surplus:
- Prairies supply wheat all over the world.
- They satisfy the hunger of millions of people spread all over the world.
- Rise of the wool industry in the Velds. The reasons responsible for this rise are the following:
- Sheep rearing is the most important occupation of the people of the Velds grasslands.
Sheep are bred mainly for wool. Hence wool availability is in ample quantity.
- The Merino wool is of the best quality.
- Further merino wool is very warm.
- Merino wool and woolen garments are in great demand all over the world.
5. Map skills:
On an outline map of North America, mark the Rocky mountains, the Great Lakes, River Mississippi, River Saskatchewan, the cities—Chicago and Winnipeg.
SHORT ANSWER TYPE QUESTIONS
1. Enumerate the major features of the prairies. [Imp.]
Answer: The major features of the prairies are:
- These are the temperate grasslands of North America.
- It is a region of flat, gently sloping or hilly land.
- Prairies are almost treeless for the most part, but near the low lying plains, flanking river valleys, woodlands can be found.
- The landscape is dominated by tall grass, upto two metres high. It looks like a ‘sea of grass’.
2. Write a brief note on the climate of the prairies.
Answer: Prairies are located in the middle of the continent (North America). It is therefore, we find there a continental type of climate, characterised by extreme temperatures. The summers are warm with temperatures of around 20°C, while in winter-20°C has been recorded in Winnipeg and Canada, the important cities of the American prairies. In winters a think blanket of snow covers this region. The annual rainfall is moderate. A local wind called Chinook blows here.
3. Write some effects of Chinook? [V. Imp.]
Answer: Chinook is a hot wind that blows in winter. Being hot it raises the temperature within a short time. This increase in temperature results in the melting of snow, making the pasturelands available for grazing of animals.
4. Describe the climate of the velds.
Answer: The velds are under the influence of the Indian Ocean. Therefore they have a mild climate. Winters are cold and dry. Temperatures vary between 5°C and 10°C and July is the coldest month. Summers are short and warm Rainfall occurs in the summer months from November to February. Drought may occur if the rainfall is poor in the winter months from June to August.
5. Describe the flora and fauna of the prairies. [V. Imp.]
Answer: Flora. Prairies don’t have many trees. A few trees such as willows, alders and poplars grow where water is available. Fertile soil is found in the places that receive rainfall of over 50 cm. The crops grown here are maize, potatoes, soyabean, cotton and alfa-alfa. In the areas receiving poor rainfall, short grasses can be found.
Fauna. Cattle rearing is suitable in these areas. Large cattle farms called ranches are found here. Bison or the American buffalo is the important animal of this region. Other animals are rabbits, coyotes, gophers and Prairie dog.
6. Describe the flora and fauna of the velds.
Answer: Flora. Velds are not rich in vegetation. Grasses dominate the landscape. Red grass grows in bush velds. High velds are characterised by grasses like acacia and maroola.
Fauna. The animals found in the velds are lions, leopards, Cheetah, and Kudu.
LONG ANSWER TYPE QUESTIONS
1. What are the major occupations of the people in the prairies? What factors contributed to the industrialisation of this region. [V. Imp.]
Answer: The people living in the praries are hardworking. Their main occupations are cultivations and dairy fanning. People use scientific methods in cultivation. They use tractors, harvesters and combines and produce surplus food. The prairies are known as the ‘Granaries of the world’ due to the huge surplus of wheat production.
Another main occupation of the people of the prairies is dairy farming. The daily belt extends from the Great Lakes to the Atlantic coast in the east. Daily farming and extensive agriculture both promote setting up of food processing industries. The factors that led to the industrialisation of this region are:
- Large mineral deposits such as coal and iron.
- A good network of roads, railways and canals.
2. What various activities are performed by the people living in the velds?
Answer: Cattle rearing and mining are the two major activities of the people living in the velds. However, some people have engaged in agriculture also, though it is not the main occupation of this region. The soils are not very fertile in the velds. Where the land is fertile enough to grow crops, maize, wheat, barley, oats, and potato are cultivated. Cash crops like tobacco, sugercane, and cotton are also grown.
People of the velds are mostly engaged in sheep rearing. Sheep is bred mainly for wool and has given rise to the wool industry in the velds. Dairy farming is the next important occupation. Cattle are reared in warmer and wetter regions and dairy products such as butter, cheese is produced for both domestic supply and also for export.
As velds are very rich in mineral reserves, gold and diamond mining are also the chief occupations of the people of this region. Johannesburg is known for being the gold capital of the world. Kimberley is famous for its diamond mines.