Most of the islands are atolls and consist of volcanic rocks deposited with coral lime. They often have a thin fertile soil layer. However, Yap, farthest to the west, is of continental origin and has been formed by folding the earth’s crust. The highest peak, 790 m above sea level, is found on Pohnpei in the east. Between the Yap and the Marianas is the world’s largest known depth, the Challenger Depth.
According to COUNTRYAAH, the climate is tropical with an annual average temperature of 26-29 °C and high rainfall, averaging 3,000 mm per year.
The flora is largely Malay. There are few unique genus but high proportion of endemic species. The coasts are often bordered by coconut trees, and in the inner parts there are bushlands and grasslands on many islands. Screw palm trees are common, and at estuaries there are mangroves.
Many islands are surrounded by coral reefs with rich fauna, while the land fauna is poor. Of mammals, only a small number of bats and moths are present. Almost 130 species of birds have been observed, including migratory birds. There are a few native species of snakes and lizards.
The Micronesian Federation has no major areas under nature protection.
Geography of the Federation of Micronesia
The Micronesia Federation encompasses the eastern and central parts of the archipelago of the Karolines (the westernmost islands of Palau), and lies entirely in the tropics north of the equator, but south of the sun’s northern (crustal) orbit. The islands of Pohnpei, Kosrae and the islands of Chuuklagun are mountainous and of volcanic origin. The main island of Yap, on the other hand, is of continental origin. Almost all of the remaining (outer) islands are flat coral atolls consisting of one or more small islands. The largest island is Pohnpei, which alone covers almost half of the entire federation’s area. Pohnpei also has the federation’s highest mountain (791 masl).
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The climate is tropical with high humidity. Temperatures are between 22 and 30 ° C with very small seasonal variations. The average daytime temperature is 27 ° C on all four main islands. The rainfall is large, but decreases from east to west (Kosrae 4700-6350 mm, Pohnpei 4900 mm, Chuuk (lagoon islands) 3600 mm and the main island of Yap 3100 mm). The islands are occasionally affected by natural disasters such as hurricanes and droughts.
Plant life in the Micronesia Federation
In the higher islands, the high rainfall and rich volcanic soil provide the basis for dense rainforest. Atolls are palm trees, as well as tropical shrubs and trees the most important vegetation forms.
Wildlife in the Micronesia Federation
Six native (endemic) bat species are the only naturally occurring land mammals in the Micronesia Federation. Numerous species have been introduced and deceived, often with significant negative consequences for the local fauna: pig, goat, deer, rabbit and three rat species.
119 species of birds are registered, more than half appear in migrations or as random guests. Among the more than 30 nesting seabird species are cetaceans, brown sole, redfish, soot and silkites, brown and black nods. Many of the terrestrial nesting birds are native: pigeons, parakeets and six goggles.
27 reptile species and one introduced amphibian species; the poisonous agapad from South America.
In the sea live several dolphin species and other whales, four sea turtle species and more than 1000 species of fish.
Among the invertebrates are the more than 400 coral species and the giant mussels up to 1 meter long.
Plant life in Micronesia
Flora and vegetation in Micronesia show a close relationship to the Asian, and preferably to Indonesia and New Guinea. Species richness and variety gradually diminish to the east, and in the eastern parts of Micronesia there is also a limited feature of species originally native to South America. The most typical vegetation on the islands is the one found in the beach zone, with many sea-spread and salt-tolerant plant species, such as coconut palms and screw palms. Mangrove vegetation occurs in brackish water sump.
In the higher islands, there are partly primary forests in the form of evergreen rainforests, but they are often replaced by secondary forests and/or grasslands where fire or changing agriculture has been involved. Gressland is also found in areas with poor soil or low rainfall, for example. on the rain shadow side of the islands.