Thursday, August 22, 2013

Amazon River: irrigating life in earth

In a crowded world, where development requires the preservation of nature, it is imperative to the existence of wilderness areas where the Earth can preserve its natural and pristine. Many times we talk about the Amazon as the "lungs of the world" for its huge plant life extensions that allow pollution recycle oxygen. In a metaphor perhaps a little poetic but certainly representative: if the forest is the lung, the Amazon River are the bronchi.
The Amazon River is a large and mighty waterway located in South America. Travel the continent from west to east, from the peaks of the Andes in Peru to the Atlantic coast of Brazil. It has a length of 6800 km, making it the longest and mightiest river in the world. The Amazon basin is also the largest watershed on the planet surface, which supports the Amazon rainforest.
There are several theories about the origin of its name: it is thought that the word "Amazon" was given by
Francisco de Orellana after facing a local ethnic group in which men and women are equally defended. Orellana derived the name from the Greek myth of the Amazon warriors of Asia and Africa, narrated by Herodotus and Diodorus. However, it is very likely that the word Amazon was a false friend paronomásico deformation of an Indian word whose pronunciation to Spanish ears was like "Amazon" Indian word meaning "breaker of boats", this marayoara especially among which could see the tremendous pounding that leads to contact this river at its mouth on the Atlantic Ocean.
Amazon traditionally assigned to second in length, behind the Nile, although there has never been a general consensus on what are the measuring points acceptable. The latest research, some 740 km further added the channel, which would place him definitely in the top of the ranking of the world's longest rivers.

The Amazon carries more water than the Mississippi, the Nile and the Yangtze together, its drainage area or basin is also the largest in the world. The volume of water carried to the Atlantic is enormous: with an annual average of 230 000 m³ / s, reaching up to 300 000 m³ / s in the rainy season. Indeed, Amazon is responsible for a fifth of all the fresh water added to the oceans of Earth. In addition, the water is perfectly drinkable offshore the mouth to a distance from the coast which is no longer visible. Atlantic Ocean salinity is considerably lower within several thousand miles around this point to the north of its mouth: it should be remembered that in this area the sea currents bring salt water into the mouth and not the reverse.
All flora and fauna of the humid intertropical American rainforest is present in the Amazon. There are countless species of plants, thousands of species of birds, amphibians and countless millions of insects still unclassified. The fauna is very varied, from the smallest insects to large mammals like the jaguar, puma, tapir and several species of deer. There are also reptiles such as turtles, caimans, alligators and snakes. There birds and fish of all species, feathers and scales. Even identified a pink dolphin species unique in the world

After cross it in one of his expeditions, the famous oceanographer Jacques-Yves Cousteau went on to state that "there are more species of fish in the Amazon than in the Atlantic Ocean"

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