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Geographic map of Cuba

Geographic map of Cuba

Cuba is an island country in Central America, located between the Caribbean Sea, the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean. To the north are the United States and the Bahamas, to the west are Mexico, to the south are the Cayman Islands and Jamaica, and to the southeast are Haiti.
Cuba has a population of 11,353,849 inhabitants (as of 2021) with the capital Havana having 2,138,915 inhabitants (as of 2019).

Geography –
The State of Cuba is located southeast of Florida, in the United States of America, and north of the Caribbean islands.
Cuba is the largest island in the Caribbean and has an area of approximately 109,884 square kilometers.
Cuba’s landscape is varied and includes mountains, plains, hills and beaches. The main mountain ranges are the Sierra Maestra, the Sierra del Escambray and the Sierra de los Órganos.
Cuba has a tropical climate, with a rainy season that runs from May to October and a dry season from November to April. Hurricanes can hit the island during hurricane season, which runs from June to November.
Cuba has several rivers, but the longest is the Cauto River. There are no large natural lakes on the island.
This country has a long coastline that extends for approximately 5,746 kilometers, characterized by numerous beaches and coves. The northern coast is washed by the Atlantic Ocean, while the southern coast is washed by the Caribbean Sea.
Havana, as well as being the capital and largest city of Cuba. Other important cities include Santiago de Cuba, Camagüey, Holguín and Santa Clara.
Cuba is surrounded by numerous smaller islands, including the Isle of Youth (Isla de la Juventud) and the Canarreos archipelago.
There are significant natural resources in this country, including cane sugar, tobacco, citrus fruits and coffee. The island is also rich in minerals, including nickel, cobalt and copper.
Cuba has several protected areas, national parks and nature reserves that contribute to the conservation of its rich biodiversity.
Cuba’s economy is based mainly on agriculture, industry, tourism and medical care. The country has a socialist system of government with a centrally planned economy.
Cuba’s geography has influenced its history, culture and economy. The island is famous for its beaches, its music, its tobacco and its complex political history.

Climate –
Cuba is characterized by a tropical climate that is mainly influenced by its geographical location and the surrounding ocean current. Here are some of the main climatic characteristics of Cuba:
Cuba has a dry season that runs from November to April. During this period, precipitation is generally low, and temperatures are quite pleasant, with average highs around 25-30°C (77-86°F).
The rainy season, however, runs from May to October. During this period, Cuba is influenced by the arrival of hurricanes in the Atlantic area. Precipitation is abundant, with the peak rainfall between June and October. Temperatures remain hot and humid, with average highs between 30 and 35°C (86-95°F).
Cuba is a humid place, especially during the rainy season. Relative humidity can reach high levels, making the climate sometimes oppressive.
Average annual temperatures vary between 24 and 28°C (75-82°F) across the country. Temperatures are generally cooler in mountainous regions and warmer along the coasts.
Cuba is prone to hurricanes during hurricane season, which runs from June to November. These climate events can cause significant damage to the country, particularly coastal areas.
Cuba also has some regional climate variations due to its geography. Eastern regions tend to be hotter and drier than western regions. Mountainous areas, such as the Sierra Maestra, can have cooler temperatures than coastal plains.
In general, Cuba offers a warm, tropical climate with a well-defined dry season and rainy season. These climatic conditions contribute to the richness of the island’s flora and fauna and make Cuba a popular destination for tourists seeking natural beauty and tropical beaches.

Flora –
This Caribbean island is known for its rich diversity of flora due to its geographical location in the Caribbean and its varied climate. Cuba’s flora includes a diverse range of species, many of which are endemic to the island, meaning they are found nowhere else in the world. Below are some notable plants and trees of Cuba:
– Royal palm (Roystonea regia): The royal palm is the national tree of Cuba and is found throughout the island. It is a tall, graceful palm with large, leafy leaves. It is often used in house construction and to make hats.
– Ceiba (Ceiba pentandra): The ceiba is an imposing and sacred tree in Cuban culture. Its wood is very resistant and is used in the construction of boats and furniture.
– Guayacán (Guaiacum officinale): The guayacán is a tree with spectacular bright blue flowers. It is mainly found in the Guantánamo region and is known for its medicinal properties.
– Orchids: Cuba is home to numerous species of orchids, many of which are endemic. These exotic flowers are found in different parts of the island and are highly prized for both their beauty and their scientific value.
– Butterfly (Hedychium coronarium): This plant produces fragrant flowers and is commonly known as “butterfly” due to the shape of its petals. It is used in landscaping and is often found in Cuban gardens.
– Cuba spiny (Melocactus): This genus of cactus is endemic to Cuba and is characterized by its spherical shape and prominent spines on the top. They are very popular with cactus collectors.
– Coconut palm (Cocos nucifera): Coconut palms are common along the Cuban coast and produce coconuts, which are an important source of food and water for local residents.
– Mangroves (Rhizophora mangle): Mangroves are trees that grow in coastal areas and play a crucial role in protecting coasts from erosion and providing habitat for numerous marine species.
– Poinciana (Delonix regia): Also known as flamboyant tree, this plant is famous for its striking red and orange flowers that bloom in warm weather.
– Sugar cane (Saccharum officinarum): Sugar cane has historically been an important crop in Cuba and is used in the production of sugar, rum and other products.
These are, of course, just a few of the many plant species found in Cuba. The diversity of Cuban flora reflects the island’s natural beauty and its importance in the conservation of biodiversity.

Fauna –
Cuba has a variety of unique and interesting fauna. However, it should be noted that Cuba’s natural habitat and wildlife have been affected by deforestation, habitat loss and other human activities. Among the faunal species of this country we mention the following:
– Cuban trogon (Priotelus temnurus): This bird is native to Cuba and is known for its bright green plumage and long tail. It is one of the island’s ornithological treasures.
– Cuban Tody (Todus multicolor): This small, brightly colored bird is endemic to Cuba and has a variety of bright colors, including green, blue and red.
– Cuban Sugar Bee (Melipona beecheii): This is a species of stingless bee native to Cuba. It is a species of stingless bee that produces honey.
– Cuban Crocodile (Crocodylus rhombifer): This crocodile is endemic to the island of Cuba and is a species in danger of extinction. It has a different body structure than American crocodiles.
– Jutía (Capromys pilorides): This is a type of marmot-like rodent found only in Cuba and surrounding islands.
– Cuban Iguana (Cyclura nubila): This iguana is found mainly in Cuba and is known for its impressive appearance and territorial behavior.
– Greater Antillean Flamingo (Phoenicopterus ruber): This species of flamingo is found in several parts of the Caribbean, including Cuba, and is known for its distinctive pink color.
– Hutia (Capromyidae): This family of rodents, which includes various species, is a distinctive element of the Cuban fauna. Some of these species are endangered.
– Solendon (Solenodon cubanus): This small nocturnal mammal is endemic to Cuba and is considered a living fossil.
– Cuban turtle (Chelonoidis carbonaria): This turtle is native to Cuba and other tropical regions of Latin America.
In addition to these species, Cuba is home to a wide variety of migratory birds, tropical fish, insects and reptiles. The island is also known for its marine habitats, such as coral reefs, where a wide range of fish species, sharks and other marine creatures can be found.
However, it is important to note, as mentioned, that wildlife conservation in Cuba is a concern, as the natural habitat is threatened by deforestation, urbanization and other human activities. Many species are endangered due to these factors, and the Cuban government is working to conserve its precious fauna.

Guido Bissanti

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