Q. Which of the following is characterised by tall grasslands, scrub savannah, sal forests and clay rich swamps?
Explanation: The northern plains are formed by the alluvial deposits brought by the rivers – the Indus, the Ganga and the Brahmaputra.
- These plains extend approximately 3,200 km from the east to the west. The average width of these plains varies between 150-300 km.
- The maximum depth of alluvium deposits varies between 1,000-2,000 m. From the north to the south, these can be divided into three major zones: the Bhabar, the Tarai and the alluvial plains.
- The alluvial plains can be further divided into the Khadar and the Bhangar. Bhabar is a narrow belt ranging between 8-10 km parallel to the Shiwalik foothills at the break-up of the slope.
- As a result of this, the streams and rivers coming from the mountains deposit heavy materials of rocks and boulders, and at times, disappear in this zone.
- South of the Bhabar is the Tarai belt, with an approximate width of 10-20 km where most of the streams and rivers re-emerge without having any properly demarcated channel, thereby creating marshy and swampy conditions known as the Tarai.
- This has a luxurious growth of natural vegetation and houses a varied wildlife.
Source: NCERT – Fundamental of Physical Geography