Central American Region

Central American Region

 

in zoogeography, the part of the Tropical Realm that encompasses the continental shelf in the tropical parts of the eastern Pacific and western Atlantic (including the Caribbean Sea and Gulf of Mexico), that is, the waters on both sides of the Isthmus of Panama. The region is sometimes classified as a subregion of the Tropical Region.

Besides genera that are common to the tropics and genera that are endemic to either the western or the eastern side of the isthmus, the region has many endemic genera, especially among fish, crabs, and echinoderms, which are found on both sides of the isthmus. Such genera, called amphi-American genera, are represented in the Pacific and Atlantic by related but different species. The waters of the western Atlantic and the eastern Pacific contain few of the same species: only about 1 percent of the shelf s fish and mollusk species and 1–10 percent of other invertebrate species are identical. Amphi-American forms are also found among the deep-sea (bathyal and abyssal) bottom animals. The pelagic faunas on the two sides of the isthmus are completely different; only circumtropical species are common to both sides. The am-phi-American areas are vestiges of past geological ages (Cretaceous-Paleogene), when the eastern Pacific and the Caribbean were connected by a strait that was completely closed up in the Pliocene, about 5 million years ago.

The Central American Region is divided into two subregions: the western Atlantic and the eastern Pacific. In view of the small number of identical species, many zoogeographers consider the Central American Region to be an artificial unit and treat the two subregions as independent regions. The western Atlantic waters have 1.5 times more species than those of the eastern Pacific and, unlike the latter, have extensively developed coral reefs with their typical fauna.

REFERENCES

Ekman, S. Zoogeography of the Sea. London, 1953.
Briggs, J. C. Marine Zoogeography. New York, 1974.

K. N. NESIS

References in periodicals archive ?
Shawn Qu, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Canadian Solar, commented, "With Canadian Solar's continued growth in the Mexico, Caribbean, and Central American region, we are proud to have taken part in the building of this solar plant in El Salvador.
A regional approach is needed to take full advantage of ICT infrastructure investments, in the Caribbean and Central American Region, and to be able to transform it into job creation and productivity gains.
The hardest hit by maras and narcos in the Central American region are the Northern Triangle countries, caught in unrelenting, spiraling violence.
In terms of geography, the proppant market has been segmented into North and Central American region wherein the U.
Sally oversaw humanitarian aid to more than two million refugees in the Central American region in the following years.
For the Caribbean and Central American region, one of the most noteworthy events was the gain in operational efficiency as a result the consolidation of the operations in Honduras and French Guiana.
In 2013 total sales of chicken meat in the Central American region amounted to $2.
This partnership will enable ACEI to expand into the Caribbean and Central American region with the development of competitive and environmentally responsible power and related energy infrastructure to serve the region's growing energy needs.
The decision to settle in Valle del Cauca complies with the Department's strategic location, which will allow importation of raw materials and exportation of finished products to countries located in the Pacific Ocean, with this plant being the production and distribution hub for the Andean and Central American region.
The harvest for the Central American region including Mexico, which in an average crop cycle reaches between 17 and 18 million bags, is expected to end at about 15 million bags this year.
The central American region where the Mayans lived is experiencing a tourism bonanza ahead of the fateful December 21 date.
Besides liberalising trade, the pact also has development cooperation and political dialogue clauses designed to help promote sustainable development, reduce poverty and consolidate stability by integrating the Central American region as a whole.

Full browser ?