PUERTO RICOS' FORESTS Adapted from the 'Forest Legacy' proposal written by the Department of Natural Resources of the Government of Puerto Rico.
The true subtropical 'Rain forest' occupies very little area in Puerto Rico, only a single, crescent shaped, band on the windward side of the El Yunque mountains. It lies wholly within the National Forest Reserve. This life zone is characterized by an annual total of 3,400 mm of rain. Its' main features are the Sierra Palms and a superabundance of epiphytes. Photos of the giant tree ferns, Icacos River dam and a hiker.
Rainforest pictures of the Dwarf forest and the Palm forest
The 'Dwarf forest' is located at the top of the rainforest on the windward slopes and has an even greater abundance of palms, ferns and epiphytes, and rain. In the dwarf cloud forest much of the vegetation on the exposed ridges has a windswept appearance. This forest is an invaluable biological curiosity, it represents an environmental extreme and, as such, is an excellent and fascinating opportunity to see the response of natural ecosystems to environmental stress. The dwarf forest is habitat for moss, orchids, bromeliads and other epiphytic plants covering available surfaces. The trees are small with twisted trunks and small thick leaves with roots that grow over the surface of the ground. Several hiking trails lead up to the dwarf forest, such as the Mt. Britton trail. The dwarf forest can only be accessed from the north side of the Forest.