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Nevertheless, differences in temperature, air quality, and oxygen levels, which vary with elevation, affect the development of many species, even those far from the perpetual snow. ADAPTATIONS The Himalayas, like the Arctic, are a very hostile environment for animals; however, 28 species of mammals—from the hairy yak to the diminutive pica—manage to cope with the hard winters. These mammals survive with the help of their fur or their ability to find and make shelters. In springtime, the high-country meadows draw many herbivorous goatlike animals, including the Siberian ibex and the Himalayan tahr.

The thick branches and needles of the trees cast heavy shadows, hampering the growth of other plants. The seeds of the trees are enclosed in cones that are covered by woody, protective scales. Although the seeds are difficult obtain, squirrels and other animals are able to extract them from the cones and store them for the winter. MOOSE Alces alces The largest animal of the deer family. Males use their antlers to fight other males during breeding season. ECOLOGY 57 BARN SWALLOW Hirundo rustica RED KITE Milvus milvus SCOTCH PINE Pinus sylvestris This pine tree is particularly hardy against frost, wind, and snow.

Ocean currents can also be classified according to temperature or other physical characteristics (as in tidal, wave, turbidity, or density currents). WARM CURRENTS COLD CURRENTS DEEP-OCEAN CURRENTS Deep-ocean currents are driven by thermohaline circulation. This type of circulation is driven by changes in water temperature and salinity (saltiness). Colder, saltier water is more dense. As it sinks, it is replaced by less dense, warmer water. Thermohaline circulation circles the globe and is an important factor in maintaining Earth’s climate.

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