Tropical rainforest covers just 6% of the globe, yet they are home to half of all species on Earth.
Tropical rainforests are found just south of the equator in Africa and Asia.
6% of Earth's land
Most biodiverse habitat on Earth
The world's largest rainforest is the Amazon, in South America, spanning nine countries and 4 million km2.
The Amazon rainforest:
4 million km2
The sheer size of these rainforests means they create their own climate through a process called transpiration.
The trees absorb more water than they use, so some is released back into the atmosphere as mist.
The mist gathers into clouds, which then move across the jungle and release their moisture as rain.
On average, a rainforest receives a staggering two meters of rain a year, half of it created by the trees.
Too much water can be a problem for plants, so many have waxy leaves with drip tips to drain excess water.
Tropical rainforest climate:
2m annual precipitation
Despite 12 hours of daylight year round, the thick canopy of a rainforest allows only 2% of sunlight to reach the forest floor, making it difficult for seedlings to grow.
So when an older tree falls the race for a spot in the canopy is on.
Macaranga plants can grow 8m a year.
Hardwood trees grow to 50m.
And liana vines can be over 900m long, creating highways for insects and animals between the trees.
Rainforests are a vital habitat, sustaining diverse ecosystems.
But these remarkable forests are under serious threat.
In the last 40 years, 20% of the Amazon has been destroyed for human gain.
If destruction continues unchecked, there are fears that by 2020 the overwhelming majority of pristine Amazon rainforest will be lost forever.