The map below shows the location of the world's tropical rainforests. Click on the dark green areas to read about the its unique rainforests. Africa contains areas of high cloud forest, mangrove swamps and flooded forests. The island of Madagascar is home to many unique plants and animals not found anywhere else.
Rainforests are forests characterized by high and continuous rainfall , with annual rainfall in the case of tropical rainforests between 2. The monsoon trough , alternatively known as the intertropical convergence zone , plays a significant role in creating the climatic conditions necessary for the Earth 's tropical rainforests: which are distinct from monsoonal areas of seasonal tropical forest. Tropical rainforests have been called the "jewels of the Earth" and the " world's largest pharmacy ", because over one quarter of natural medicines have been discovered there. The undergrowth in some areas of a rainforest can be restricted by poor penetration of sunlight to ground level. If the leaf canopy is destroyed or thinned, the ground beneath is soon colonized by a dense, tangled growth of vines , shrubs and small trees , called a jungle. The term jungle is also sometimes applied to tropical rainforests generally. Rainforests as well as endemic rainforest species are rapidly disappearing due to deforestation , the resulting habitat loss and pollution of the atmosphere.