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North America is the 3rd largest continent according to its landmass. It is located at 7°12' north to 83°7' North latitude and 52°37' west to 172°27' East longitude, and has an area of 25.3 million sq.km (9.3 million sq. miles). The continent is bounded by The Atlantic Ocean in the east, The Pacific Ocean in the west, The Arctic Ocean in the north, The Panama Canal and the Caribbean Sea in the south, and The Bering Strait in the north-west. It has 23 countries including the island nations of Central and Latin America with 16 territories.
The chief mountain chains here are the Rocky Mountain chain of approximately 4800km from North-South, Sierra Nevada, Sierra Madre and Appalachian Highland, Mt. McKinley (6194m) and Mt. Elbert (4399m). The rivers that flow here are the Mississippi, Missouri, Arkansas, Rio Grande, St. Lawrence, Yukon and Colorado. There are some great lakes like the Great Bear, Great Slave, Superior, Huron, Michigan, Winnipeg and Ontario. The Niagara Falls is a world famous waterfall which straddles the international border between the Canada and United States. The Grand Canyon is the second deepest gorge in the world and is made by river Colorado. The Death Valley is the hottest place here with 150 sq. km. area and has an average temperature which does not fall below 50oC.
Climate and Vegetation
The factor affecting the climate and vegetation of this continent are: latitude position, the Rocky Mountain Chain and coastal influence. Due to the influence of these factors, climate of North America greatly varies from one place to other places. There is extreme cold winter and very short summer with the maximum temperature of 10°C to 12°C. There is Tundra type of climate and vegetation called Taiga, with alpine forest consisting of soft wood. This forest is dense in Northwest and thinner towards East. The tall alpine trees are good in pulp and timber industries.
Fishery business has developed in New found land of Canada because it is a meeting point of warm and cold currents where a lot of sea organisms on which fish live are found.
The countries of North America and their capitals are given below:
|United States of America||Washington DC|
|Costa Rica||San Jose|
|Dominican Republic||Santo Domingo|
|Antigua and Bermuda's||Saint Johns|
|El Salvador||San Salvador|
|St Christopher- Nevis||Basseterre|
|St Vincent and the grenadines Grenada||St George|
|Trinidad and Tobago||Part of Spain|
Eastern high lands are old fold mountains which have been denuded over millions of years. They form a complicated high land system. There are three highland areas within eastern highlands in North America. In the extreme north, there is the plateau of Greenland. The Labrador plateau and the laureate highland cover a great are of Canada to the north of St. Lawrence valley. Further south of St. Lawrence valley in the United States lie in the Appalachian highland. These highlands extreme form new found land to Alabama. East of the Appalachian Ranges lay the plateau and the piedmont Atlantic coastal plain.
The three major physical region of North America are as follows:
Nine types of climate are found in North America. They are as follows:
Eastern part of North America run from north to south along the Atlantic ocean. It is a fertile land which consists of gulf plain, Atlantic coastal plain and St. Lawrence river basins. There are several indentations resulted by gulfs, bays and inlets. So, thousands of harbors have been established. They provide an ideal condition to keep trade relation with different parts of the world. Moreover, this region has equable climate. Such climate is best for human habitation highly advanced people in this region. They have established many industries and run all sorts of services. The biggest and famous inventions of the world have taken place in this region. So, eastern part of the North America is highly developed.