Arid pampas steppe glows in the sunshine of Glacier National Park, Patagonia, Argentina.
Savanna, steppe, prairie, or pampas: They're all grasslands, the globe's most agriculturally useful habitats.
Grasslands go by many names. In the U.S. Midwest, they're often called prairies. In South America, they're known as pampas. Central Eurasian grasslands are referred to as steppes, while African grasslands are savannas. What they all have in common are grasses, their naturally dominant vegetation. Grasslands are found where there is not enough regular rainfall to support the growth of a forest, but not so little that a desert forms. In fact, grasslands often lie between forests and deserts. (See grassland photos.)
Depending on how they’re defined, grasslands account for between 20 and 40 percent of the world's land area. They are generally open and fairly flat, and they exist on every continent except Antarctica, which makes