The Pacific Ocean and El Niño effect in Peru
The cold water of the Pacific Ocean brought by the Humboldt current, makes its water rich in plankton which supports a rich variety of fish and marine animals as well as birds who feed from the fish. Fish and its byproducts are an important source of economic activity in the coast and an important part of food resource for the local population.
Every few years a stream of warm water originating in the equator flows south, warming the cold waters that support the plankton. When the plankton dies, fish stock decreases therefore bringing death to marine animals. Some of these animals such as the Humboldt penguins, sea lions, and turtles are in danger of extinction; they also affect the population of migrating birds. This phenomenon is known by Peruvians as El Niño, named after Baby Jesus because it happens in December at around Christmas.
Peru Geography – The Coast
The coast covers about 10% of the territory but is home to more than 50% of the population.
Lima, the capital of Peru, is located in the coast bordering the Pacific Ocean. It is the largest city in the country and over eight million people call Lima home.
Peru Geography – Pacific Ocean and El Niño effect
The cold water of the Pacific Ocean brought by the Humboldt current, makes its water rich in plankton which supports a rich variety of fish and marine animals as well as birds who feed from the fish.
Peru Geography – The Andes
The Peruvian Andes has the largest concentration of glaciers in the region and provide the most spectacular views of snow capped mountains and glaciers.
Peru Geography – The Amazon
The low Selva is part of the world’s largest rain forest that extends to half the territory of Brazil.
Peru Geography – Amazon River
The Amazon River flows east from the Peruvian Andes across Brazil and empties into the Atlantic Ocean. In 2000, a National Geographic Society expedition found that its most distant source is the melting snow cap of a mountain called Nevado Mismi in the Peruvian Andes.
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Tags: El Niño, fishing industry, geography of Peru, Humboltd current, Pacific Ocean