Terrain shapes and bedrock
According to COUNTRYAAH, Jamaica is part of the Antilles mountain range arch, formed during the Tertiary, which delimits the Caribbean Sea to the north and east. The bedrock is mostly made up of limestone from older tertiary and chalk and effusive rocks from tertiary. Mountain ranges dominate the eastern and central parts of the island. Especially the east, where the Blue Mountains are at an altitude of 2,256 m above sea level, provides great variety and beauty to the landscape. Below the mountain region, a heavily broken limestone plateau is spreading, where some parts, such as the Cockpit land in the northwest, are extremely difficult to access due to a distinct karst topography with dolines, sinkholes, caves and underground rivers. A third landform in Jamaica is plains, which extend along the coasts to the south and west. The rivers, e.g. Black River, Rio Grande, Rio Cobre and Rio Minho.
Jamaica has a tropical savannah-type climate with a low temperature variation for both days and years. The average temperature in the lower parts is 25–28 °C throughout the year but decreases with increasing altitude. The precipitation falls mainly in May – October and averages 2,000 mm per year for the island. The northern parts get up to 5,000 mm per year, while the southern parts get less than 1,000 mm. Jamaica is also exposed to strong tropical cyclones.
The lower parts of the island are now very heavily cultivated but have been covered with forest. In the south there was sparse dry forest of deciduous trees, among other things. acacias, with undergrowth of pineapple plants and cactus plants. At medium height, there have been dense forests with mahogany. The north side, with its richer rainfall, has already had rainforest from the sea level, nowadays replaced by ao. banana plantations. The preserved mountain rainforest in the Blue Mountains is very rich in fern plants, both tree worms (Cyaʹtheaet al) and epiphytes (many ferns of the families stoneware and retina). The number of species (excluding conifers and ferns) is estimated at 3,000, of which almost 800 are endemic. The woody plants make up half, and half the herbs are one-hearted; the high proportion is due to the abundance of epiphytes in mainly the families of pineapple plants and orchids.
The island’s relatively isolated location means that the natural occurrence of most animal groups is sparse, and several species have also disappeared after the arrival of Europeans due to biotope destruction and the introduction of gold-spotted mangoes and other foreign species. In return, the degree of endemism is very high. There are now five species of endemic mammals (Jamaican roe, Geocaʹpromys broʹwnii, and four species of bats), 26 endemic (of well over 200 species observed) bird species (including two species of Amazon parrots, Jamaicanatody, Toʹdus toʹdus, and pennant, polyʹtmus, which is also the country’s national bird), 27 endemic reptile species and 20 endemic amphibian species. The country’s non-endemic reptiles include lace crocodile (Crocodyʹlus acuʹtus), which is nowadays rare, however.
In 2009, 7% of the country’s land was under some form of nature protection. The country has 3 national parks, of which the Blue Mountains/John Crow Mountain is the largest.