What controls where an animal lives
the ecological niche or broader habitat that a species has evolved and adapted into
* put simply, where the species can best survive
the geographical distribution of animal species & populations on
the earth’s surface
Habitat destruction
effect on populations and species, and species assemblages

* effect on increasing extinction rates (considered the main cause of extinction among plants and animals)

Introduced or exotic species
effect on local or native species
EX: kudzu in southern US, mongoose in Hawaii,
Argentine fire ant into US, rabbits into Australia
* one of the least diverse realms
* EX: American bison, pronghorn antelope, Bald eagle,
prairie dogs, Whooping crane, etc.
Europe, northern Asia(north of the Himalayas),
& North Africa(north of the Sahara)
* also area of low diversity
* the Paleoarctic & Neoarctic sometimes combined as the Holarctic
* EX: Siberian tiger, Giant panda
* South America, so of Central America
* one of the richest & most varied faunal assemblages
* EX: tapir, jaguar, llama, vicuna, macaws, numerous marsupials,
boa constrictor, prehensile-tailed monkeys(Spider, Colobus, etc)
Ethopian (Paleotropical)
* Sub-Saharan Africa
* also one of the richest & most varied faunal assemblages
* EX: zebra, giraffe, hyena, ostrich, gorilla, chimpanzee,
numerous antelope sp., etc
* Island of Madagascar and nearby Comoro islands
* quite different from Africa, despite their proximity
* EX: lemurs, elephant shrew
Oriental (Indomalayan)
* South central and southeast Asia
* fairly diverse fauna, but not quite as diverse as the Ethiopian
* EX: orangutan, Bengal tiger, Indian elephant, mongoose
Australia, New Guinea & nearby islands
* Australia has the highest diversity of marsupial mammals of any
realm or region on Earth; all placental mammals(but a sp. of bat)
brought in by humans
* also the only known place where Monotreme mammals reside
(Duck-billed platypus, Spiny echidnid)
* kangaroo, wombat, Tasmanian devil, emu, koala, etc
New Zealand
sometimes included within the Australian realm, but has
a rather unique fauna
* no endemic or native mammals, only those brought in by humans
* endemic sp. include the kiwi, & the tuatara
the islands of the Pacific not included in any other realm;
Fuji, Hawaii, etc
* each island group is often quite unique do to its isolation;
EX: Hawaiian honeycreepers(birds), Galapagos finches

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