A geography of nicaragua

Print this map InNicaragua was inhabited by over a million indigenous Indians when Christopher Columbus stopped briefly along its Caribbean coastline.

A geography of nicaragua

Shaded relief map of Nicaragua Political map of Nicaragua Satellite image of Nicaragua in March Economic activity map of Nicaragua, Pacific lowlands[ edit ] The Pacific lowlands extend about 75 kilometers inland from the Pacific coast.

Most of the area is flat, except for a line of young volcanoesmany of which are still active, running between the Golfo de Fonseca and Lago de Nicaragua. The rift is occupied in part by the largest freshwater lakes in Central America: Lago de Managua 56 kilometers long and 24 kilometers wide and Lago de Nicaragua about kilometers long and 75 kilometers wide.

From the southwest edge of Lago de Nicaragua, it is only nineteen kilometers to the Pacific Ocean. This route was considered as a possible alternative to the Panama Canal at various times in the past.

Surrounding the lakes and extending northwest of them along the rift valley to the Golfo de Fonseca are fertile lowland plains highly enriched with volcanic ash from nearby volcanoes. These lowlands are densely populated and well cultivated.

More directly west of the lake region is a narrow line of ash-covered hills and volcanoes that separate the lakes from the Pacific Ocean. Because Western Nicaragua is located where two major tectonic plates collide, it is subject to earthquakes and volcanic eruptions.

Although periodic volcanic eruptions have caused agricultural damage from fumes and ash, earthquakes have been by far more destructive to life and property.

A geography of nicaragua

Hundreds of shocks occur each year, some of which cause severe damage. The capital city of Managua was virtually destroyed in and again in Central highlands[ edit ] The triangular area known as the central highlands lies northeast and east of the Pacific lowlands.

These rugged mountains are composed of ridges to 1, meters high and a mixed forest of oak and pine alternating with deep valleys that drain primarily toward the Caribbean. Very few significant streams flow west to the Pacific Ocean.

Those that do are steep, short, and flow intermittently. The relatively dry western slopes of the central highlands, protected by the ridges of the highlands from the moist winds of the Caribbean, have drawn farmers from the Pacific region since colonial times.

The eastern slopes are among the wettest places in the world, being too wet for agriculture, and have an economy dominated by timber extraction. Caribbean lowland[ edit ] The eastern Caribbean lowlands of Nicaragua form the extensive and exaggerated occupying more than 50 percent of national territory and still sparsely settled lowland area known as the Costa de Mosquitos Miskito Coast.

The soil is generally leached and infertile. Pine and palm savannas predominate as far south as the Laguna de Perlas. Climate[ edit ] Temperature varies little with the seasons in Nicaragua and is largely a function of elevation.

Rainfall[ edit ] Rainfall varies greatly in Nicaragua. The Caribbean lowlands are the wettest section of Central America, receiving between 2, and 6, millimeters The western slopes of the central highlands and the Pacific lowlands receive considerably less annual rainfall, being protected from moisture-laden Caribbean trade winds by the peaks of the central highlands.

Mean annual precipitation for the rift valley and western slopes of the highlands ranges from 1, to 1, millimeters Rainfall is seasonal—May through October is the rainy season, and December through April is the driest period.

During the rainy season, Eastern Nicaragua is subject to heavy flooding along the upper and middle reaches of all major rivers. Near the coast, where river courses widen and river banks and natural levees are low, floodwaters spill over onto the floodplains until large sections of the lowlands become continuous sheets of water.

A geography of nicaragua

River bank agricultural plots are often heavily damaged, and considerable numbers of savanna animals die during these floods. The coast is also subject to destructive tropical storms and hurricanes, particularly from July through October. The high winds and floods, accompanying these storms often cause considerable destruction of property.

In addition, heavy rains called papagayo storms accompanying the passage of a cold front or a low-pressure area may sweep from the north through both eastern and western Nicaragua particularly the rift valley from November through March.

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Hurricanes or heavy rains in the central highlands where agriculture has destroyed much of the natural vegetation also cause considerable crop damage and soil erosion.Nicaragua has a unique history in that it was the only country in Latin America to be colonized by both the Spanish and the British.

Nicaragua’s population is made up mostly of mestizos (people of mixed European and Indian ancestry). The Spanish colony of Nicaragua was ruled from the Spanish empire's regional capital of Guatemala, with one exception - as the British influenced (or controlled) much of its Caribbean coastline, an area inhabited by Miskito (Mosquito) Indians.

Geography, Climate, and Biodiversity of Nicaragua Nicaragua is a large country located in Central America between the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea. Its terrain is mostly coastal plains that eventually rise up to interior mountains.

Nicaragua (officially the Republic of Nicaragua Spanish: República de Nicaragua [reˈpuβlika ðe nikaˈɾaɣwa] (listen)) is a country in Central America, bordering both the Caribbean Sea and the North Pacific Ocean, between Costa Rica and Honduras.

Nicaragua is the largest country in Central America.

Geography of Nicaragua

Geography, Climate, and Biodiversity of Nicaragua Nicaragua is a large country located in Central America between the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea. Its terrain is mostly coastal plains that eventually rise up to interior mountains. Nicaragua Geography Nicaragua is an incredibly beautiful country with wonderfully diverse geography.

The country covers slightly less area than the state of New York but that does not mean it is small and uninteresting – quite to the contrary!

The World Factbook — Central Intelligence Agency