Natural regions of peru

When the Spanish arrived, they divided Peru (very simplistically) into three main regions: the coastal region (11.6% of Peru), that is bounded by the Pacific Ocean; the highlands (28.1% of Peru), that is located on the Andean Heights, and the jungle, that is located on the Amazonian Jungle (Climate of Peru). But Javier Pulgar Vidal (es), a geographer who studied the biogeographic reality of the Peruvian territory for a long time, proposed the creation of eight Natural Regions.[1][2] In 1941, he presented his thesis "Las Ocho Regiones Naturales del Perú" at the III General Assembly of the Pan-American Institute of Geography and History.

These eight Peruvian regions are:

Example: Andes 10°S

See also Altitudinal zonation

Classic version, Amazonic side

(the warmest month has an average temperature of below 22°C or 72°F).

(the warmest month has an average temperature of below 18°C or 64°F).

(the definition of treeline of Coniferae: the warmest month has an average temperature of below 10°C or 50°F ).

Terrestrial Biome Type 10: Montane grasslands and shrublands

(just warmer than -1°C over rocks or just warmer than -3°C over snow, annual mean temperature).[3][4][5][6] [7]

Javier Pulgar Vidal's version

The Peruvian geographer Javier Pulgar Vidal divided Peru in 8 regions (traditionally, it was costa, sierra and selva):

Map from República del Perú - Instituto Geográfico Nacional

  • Chala (West, Pacific Coast) 0– 500 m
  • Omagua (Lowland jungle or Selva baja, Amazonic rainforest) 80– 400 m
  • Rupa-Rupa (Highland jungle, Selva alta) 400– 1,000 m
  • Yunga (Aymaran for "Warm Lands", Cloud forest)
    • Loma-Vegetation (West, "Yunga costal" at the north of Peru) 450– 600 m
    • Fluvial Yungas (East, "Yunga fluvial") 1,000- 2,300 m
  • Quechua (East, High valleys) 2,300– 3,500 m
  • Suni (or Jalca or Sallqa too, high plateaus and cliffs) 3,500– 4,100 m
  • Puna (means "mountain top") 4,100– 4,800 m
  • Janca (means white) above 4,800 m, permafrost, rocks, snow and ice [1]


Tropical and subtropical moist broadleaf forests

Montane grasslands and shrublands

Deserts and xeric shrublands

Overview - Amazonic side

  • Mouth of the Amazon River, Atlantic Ocean
    • Belém, Brazil, 24 m, annual mean temperature 26.0°C
    • Gurupa varzea (NT0126) [17]
    • Manaus, Brazil, 72 m, annual mean temperature 26.6°C
    • Monte Alegre varzea (NT0141) [18]
    • Purus varzea (NT0156) [19]
  • Colombia - Peru - Brazil border
    • Leticia, Colombia, 84 m, annual mean temperature 25.8°C
    • Tierra Caliente or Tropical rainforest
      • Omagua or Selva baja (Southwest Amazon moist forests - NT0166) [11]
      • Iquitos, Peru, 126 m, annual mean temperature 26.2°C
      • Rupa-Rupa or Selva alta (Iquitos varzea - NT0128) [20]
    • Yunga fluvial (more than 5°C colder than the Peruan Tropics)
      • Peruvian Yungas (NT0153) [10]
    • Quechua (High valleys, more than 10°C colder than the Peruan Tropics)
  • Treeline
    • Tierra Helada
      • Suni (plateau)
  • Mountain pass
    • Puna (mountain slope)
      • Central Andean wet puna (NT1003) [21]
      • Central Andean puna (NT1002) [13]
    • "Andean-Alpine desert"
  • Snow line
    • Tierra Nevada or Janca
  • Peak

Estimated temperatures - Continental Divide


  • Region, altitude (m); avg annual precipitation (mm); avg annual temperature (°C);
  • Peruvian Highland Rainforest (Tropical climate), Cloud forest (Subtropical climate) and Temperate forest (Temperate climate);
  • Cusco reference, estimated avg annual temperature (°C, Lowland Rainforest or Selva baja gets more rain, so it is more cloudy, so it is cooler);
  • Snow line reference, Humboldt cold current/ Pacific climate influence, estimated avg annual temperature (°C).[22]
    • Cuzco, Peru; 3,249 m; avg annual temperature 12.5 °C; avg annual precipitation 736 mm.
    • Lima, Peru; 30 m; avg annual temperature 19.2 °C (fog influence); avg annual precipitation 15 mm.
Altitude West - Pacific side East - Amazonian side
Highland Rainforest or Selva alta 400 m  - 26.5 °C
Loma-Vegetation 500 m about 21.1 °C  -
Cloud forest or Fluvial Yunga 1,000 m  - 23.5 °C
Quechua - Montane Valleys 2,300 m  - 17.2 °C
Amazonian Tree line of Coniferae: 10 °C about 3,500 m  - about 10 °C
Mountain pass influence 4,100 m about 3.4 °C (about 7.1 °C)
Vegetation end about 4,800 m about 0.0 °C  -
Snow line about 5,000 m about -1.0 °C  -

Example: Kallawaya Region, Bolivia

Altitudinal zonation: Kallawaya Region, around Charazani, Bolivia (border to Peru).

  • Glacier
    • Altitude: 5,900- 5,200 m, Annual mean temperature: below 0 °C, Agriculture: none
  • High Mountain Desert, Werneria ciliolata on scree
    • Altitude: 5,200- 5,000 m, Annual mean temperature: below 0 °C - 0 °C, Agriculture: none.
  • Grass Zone
    • Calamagrostis minima Steppe,
      • Altitude: 5,000- 4,600 m, Annual mean temperature: 0- 3.5 °C, Farming: alpacas, lamas.
    • Pycnophyllum Steppe,
      • Altitude: 4,600- 4,300 m, Annual mean temperature: 3.5- 7.5 °C, Farming: alpacas, lamas.
    • Aciachne Humid Grassland,
      • Altitude: 4,300- 3,900 m, Annual mean temperature: 7.5- 10.0 °C, Farming: alpacas, lamas, pigs; Agriculture: bitter potatoes, (oca), (oat); Fallow land: more than 8 years.
  • Shrub Zone
    • Satureja Shrub (westslope), Baccharis pentandii Shrub, with Berberis (eastslope),
      • Altitude: 3,900- 3,600 m, Annual mean temperature: 10.0- 11.5 °C, Farming: sheep; Agriculture: potatoes, oca, ulluco, barley; Fallow land: 3 to 4 years.
    • Mutisia Shrub (westslope), Baccharis pentlandii Shrub, with Siphocampylus (eastslope),
      • Altitude: 3,600- 2,700 m, Annual mean temperature: 11.5- 16.5 °C, Farming: sheep, cattle; Agriculture: wheat, (barley), peas, beans, maize up to 3,500 m with crop rotation.
    • Kaunia longipetiolata Shrub,
    • Highland Rainforest,
      • Altitude: below 2,700 m, Annual mean temperature: over 17.0 °C, Farming: cattle; Agriculture: tropical fruits, oranges, coffee, coca at around 2,000 m.[23]


See also


ca:Geografia del Perú
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