The Geography of Canada Portal
Geography by province and territory
The geography of Canada is vast and diverse. Occupying most of the northern portion of North America (41% of the continent), Canada is the world's second largest country in total area after Russia. Canada spans an immense territory between the Pacific Ocean to the west and the Atlantic Ocean to the east and the Arctic Ocean to the north (hence the country's motto "From sea to sea"), with the United States to the south (contiguous United States) and northwest (Alaska), and the Arctic Ocean to the north; Greenland is to the northeast. Off the southern coast of Newfoundland lies Saint-Pierre and Miquelon, an overseas collectivity of France. Since 1925, Canada has claimed the portion of the Arctic between 60°W and 141°W longitude to the North Pole; however, this claim is contested. Canada's abundance of natural resources is reflected in their continued importance in the economy of Canada. Major resource-based industries are fisheries, forestry, agriculture, petroleum products and mining.
The flora of Canada is quite diverse, due to the wide range of ecoregions and environmental conditions present in Canada. From the warm, temperate broadleaf forests of southern Ontario to the frigid Arctic plains of the Northern Canada, from the wet temperate rainforests of the west coast to the arid deserts, badlands and tundra plains, the biodiversity of Canada's plants is extensive. About 4,100 species of vascular plants are native to Canada, and about 1,200 additional non-native species are recorded as established outside cultivation there.
The fauna of Canada is considered to be diverse across Canada, ranging from lush forests of British Columbia, to the prairies of Western Canada, to the tundra of the Northern Canada. With a large land mass, and small population density, the wildlands of Canada provide important habitat for many animals, both endangered and not. Canada is home to approximately 70 000 known species of plants and animals - and perhaps many more that have yet to be discovered.
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Volcanism of Canada
Recently erupted pahoehoe lava flow at the Blue River
has produced lava
flows, lava plateaus
, lava domes
, cinder cones
, shield volcanoes
, submarine volcanoes
, and maars
, along with examples of more less common volcanic forms such as tuyas
and subglacial mounds
. It has a very complex volcanological history spanning from the Precambrian
period at least 6,000years ago when this part of the North American continent began to form.
Although the country's volcanic activity dates back to the Precambrian period, volcanism continues to occur in Western and Northern Canada where it forms part of an encircling chain of volcanoes and frequent earthquakes around the Pacific Ocean called the Pacific Ring of Fire. Volcanic activity has been responsible for many of Canada's geological and geographical features and mineralization, including the nucleus of North America called the Canadian Shield.
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Selected fauna -
The Harp Seal
or Saddleback seal
is a species of earless seal
native to the northernmost Atlantic Ocean
and adjacent parts of the Arctic Ocean
. Officially Pagophilus groenlandicus
, which means ice-lover from Greenland, it has a synonym Phoca groenlandica
or Greenland seal. It can also be found in Canada It is also known as the Greenland seal
Females mature sexually at age 5–6. Annually thereafter they bear one pup, usually in late February. The fertilized egg grows into a spherical embryo that implants in the uterus only after 3 or so months, to allow birth to take place while sufficient pack ice is available. Newborn pups weight around 11 kilograms (24 lb) and are 80–85 centimetres (31–33 in) long. After birth, the mother only feeds that pup. During the 12-day nursing period, the mother does not eat, losing up to 3 kilograms (6.6 lb) per day. All three populations are hunted commercially, mainly by Canada, Norway, Russia and Greenland.
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Did you know? -
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Terra Nova National Park
is located on the northeast coast of the island of Newfoundland
in the Canadian
province of Newfoundland and Labrador
, along several inlets of Bonavista Bay
. The park takes its name from the latin
name for Newfoundland.
Terra Nova's landscape is typical of the northeast coast of Newfoundland, with remnants of the Appalachian Mountains contributing to widely varied and rugged topography throughout the region. The park's seacoast consists of several rocky "fingers" jutting into Bonavista Bay along an area stretching from just north of Port Blandford to the vicinity of Glovertown. The coastline varies from cliffs and exposed headlands to sheltered inlets and coves, contributing to Newfoundland's prime recreational boating area.
Inland areas consist of rolling forested hills, exposed rock faces, and bogs, ponds and wetlands. Wildlife protected by the park range from small to large land mammals, migratory birds, and various marine life. Terra Nova also protects an area containing remnants of the Beothuk Nation, as well as many of the early pioneer European settlements in the region.
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is a species of flowering plant
of the order Proteales
that is native to North America
. - American Lotus
, Yellow Lotus
, and Water-chinquapin
Like the Asian species Nelumbo nucifera, the Lotus is an emergent aquatic plant. It grows in lakes and swamps, as well as areas subject to flooding. The roots are anchored in the mud, but the leaves and flowers emerge above the water's surface. The petioles of the leaves may extend as much as 2 m (6.6 ft) and end in a round leaf blade 33–43 cm (13–17 in) in diameter. Mature plants range in height from 0.8 to 1.5 m (2.6 to 4.9 ft).
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In the news
The following Wikimedia
sister projects provide more on this subject:
Wed, 30 Jul 2014 16:15:00 -0700
ANTIGONISH — John Kennedy can remember one summer as dry as this one. It was 1979 and the Lanark, Antigonish County, dairy farmer had to order hay from Prince Edward Island to feed his cows. “This year is darn near as bad as that one,” said the ...
Tue, 15 Jul 2014 07:52:51 -0700
Established in 1959 by the Massey Foundation, the Massey Medal is awarded annually by the society to recognize outstanding career achievement in the exploration, development or description of the geography of Canada. After his university retirement, ...
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