Ok you are in some luck, i did my internal assesment on the adaptations of plants in natural savannahs, i really canoot pinpoit. those adaptations for you but i can relay what i learnt in a specific form including the scientific names of the plants which can be easily found on a serch engine. The savannah done is the aripo scientific reserve in Trinidad.
The Aripo Scientific Reserve is located within the vicinity of Valencia and Cumuto in Trinidad.(See Map For Location Pg 8b)(-Philip's Certificate Atlas For The Caribbean 5th Edition).These savannahs or tropical grasslands are described as unique ecosystems with areas of open trees and various shrubs that grow out over a continuous ground cover of non-woody or herbaceous plants. These types of savannahs are usually found in countries that experience both wet and dry conditions. The major elements of this climax transitional ecosystem include moisture, nutrients, fire and grazing, with the tree-grass duality. (Brown University Website- http://envstudies.brown.edu/thesis/2005/timothy_downing/Ecology.htm)
Before being designated as a Scientific Reserve, the Savannahs and Marsh Forest had quite a history before becoming an ideal environmental interest. The savannahs went through stages of protection but were carelessly interfered by political and global causes. In 1934 the area was proclaimed as a forest reserve by the Forest Ordinance Chapter 141 of 1916 and by the Crown Forest Produce Rules. However 1600 acres of land was leased to the United States of America for military purposes in 1940, thus environmentally disturbing selected areas of this diverse ecosystem. An abandon bunker is the only remnants of a man made influence within the savannahs. In 1956 the area was reverted to the government to be managed as a forest reserve, until in 1987 became a prohibited area. The savannahs proved to be a great source of education, therefore relationships developed between interested organizations to facilitate young minds in education (1998). Finally in 2004 the site was proposed as an Environmentally Sensitive Area due to its rare endemic species.(Pamphlet on Aripo Savannahs) There was also a lot of political influences both locally and internationally in terms of securing the environmental richness of the savannahs. The government of Trinidad and Tobago requested that the Organization of American States assist the country in establishing a plan for a system of national parks and protected areas and creates a policy from which legislation could be enacted. (Leach.M and J Fairhead 2001Science, Policy and National Parks in Trinidad and Tobago. The institute of Development Studies.)
Diversity in its simplest form describes the variation of life at all levels of biological organization. Ecologists tend to use much more defined explanations describing diversity as the totality of genes, species, and ecosystems of a region. The Aripo Scientific reserve has an international reputation for its unusual flora in striking vegetation communities. It is one of the more studied ecosystems in Trinidad. The ten open savannahs that make up the Aripo Scientific Reserve have low herbaceous vegetation caused by an impervious hardpan layer a few centimeters below the soil surface. In terms of Biodiversity at the scientific reserve 457 species have been identified so far, 38 are restricted to the Aripo Scientific Reserve and between 16 and 20 are rare and threatened as well as 2 endemic floral species (EMA Environmental Management Authority. The Administrative Record for Aripo Savannahs Scientific Reserve) There are various ecosystems found at the Scientific Reserve, they include: Palm Forest, Marsh Forest and of course the highly diversified Aripo Savannahs. The diversity that presents itself with the Aripo Scientific Reserve is quite important since species that carry out the similar function can easily replace each other thus a change in population density is less likely to affect the population of another.
“Species Richness” is the number of different species found within an ecosystem. The more species found, the more rich it is said to be. Richness has nothing to do with number of individuals within a species. Environments that have 40 species with 10000 individuals are richer as oppose to an environment that has 20 species with 100000 individuals. Within the scientific reserve there are many species of flora that were present. Drosera Capillaris, Rhynchospora Curvula and Perama Hirsuta are just some of the floral species that were present within the reserve.
There are many Abiotic characteristics of the Reserve. The following were examined: rainfall, humidity, soil, topography, temperature, light.
First and foremost such savannahs as Aripo only exist in areas that have a hot and dry season or a hot and wet season. Trinidad falls within the hot and wet season. The temperature to sustain the conditions for the savannahs is 32 degrees Celsius. This temperature must be sustained during the months March, April and May, reaching heights of 35 degrees Celsius. Trinidad is well within such limits with the highest temperatures reaching 36 degrees within the said period.
(-Philip's Certificate Atlas for The Caribbean 5th Edition) The temperature at the reserve at a maximum reaches 30-32 degrees Celsius and at a minimum 20-25 degrees Celsius. Maximum temperatures tend to be higher in the dry season due to higher rates of isolation and minimum temperatures tend to be lower due to the higher rates of nocturnal radiation of heat.( Forestry Division, Ministry of Agriculture, Lands and Food Production. Management and Development Plan: Aripo Savannahs Scientific Reserve, P.O.S Trinidad)
On average the humidity is 72.5 percent in the country. The air is generally saturated giving way to mostly warm conditions. (-Philip's Certificate Atlas for the Caribbean 5th Edition)
In most savannahs rainfall is influenced by the Inter Tropical Convergent Zone. Trinidad’s rainy season is dependant upon it. However since it is a tropical country it is affected by heavy rainfall. The minimum rainfall conditions for the savannah are 750mm per annum. In Trinidad the average annual rainfall is 1723mm of rainfall, with 234 average days with rainfall per year. (-Philip's Certificate Atlas for the Caribbean 5th Edition) Within the Aripo Scientific Reserve the annual rainfall is 2500mm. This rainfall is concentrated during the months of June to December with a monthly average of 250mm. The more dry months are between January and May where the monthly averages are between 50 and 100mm. The soil is mostly waterlogged after the rainy season, but is dried after the more dry months. .( Forestry Division, Ministry of Agriculture, Lands and Food Production. Management and Development Plan: Aripo Savannahs Scientific Reserve, P.O.S Trinidad)
The soils are derived from weathering and underlying alluvial materials. The hardpan and the infertility of the soil due to weathering are the two most important features of the soil. The hard pan layer prevents the vertical movement of water creating alternative conditions of drought and water logging where the hardpan layer is located close to the soil surface. The soils at the reserve are generally low in terms of fertility and are only capable of supporting the life of mainly grasses and herbs. .( Forestry Division, Ministry of Agriculture, Lands and Food Production. Management and Development Plan: Aripo Savannahs Scientific Reserve, P.O.S Trinidad)
In terms of light Trinidad is balanced with 12 hours of sunlight, roughly decreasing by 1hour from October to January. (-Philip's Certificate Atlas for the Caribbean 5th Edition)
The Aripo Scientific Reserve is located at the foot hills of the Northern Range. It is generally flat with gentle gradient rising toward the north towards Valencia. It is 30=45m above sea level. Natural topographical features that are observed are the 3-5m deep ravines within the reserve.
The scientific reserve presents a wide various of species diversity and richness that is incomparable with the western savannahs of the world.
Within the Aripo Scientific Reserve there are 457 species of plant life discovered so far. These species have been categorized into six vegetation communities: Open Savannah, Palm Marsh, Marsh Forest, Palm Island, Intermittent Open Water, and Trackside. (EMA Administrative Record for Environmentally Sensitive Area: Aripo Savannahs Scientific Reserve)
Surveying the quadrants at the reserve resulted with the examination of the Aripo Savannah and the Aripo Marsh Forest. Fifteen species were discovered in the savannah whereas fourteen were discovered in the Marsh Forest.
The savannahs are vegetative communities that are located or divided into ten separate areas. The vegetation found here included grasses, hedges, sedges and herbs; the soil is thin with a hardpan layer close to the surface preventing larger plants from establishing the area. The soils of this area are infertile and organisms in this area have adapted to these conditions. 95 species have been recorded thus far for this community type. (EMA Administrative Record for Environmentally Sensitive Area: Aripo Savannahs Scientific Reserve)
The Marsh Forest however covers most of the reserve, the dominant vegetation type being mostly forest species. There is an overlap between the savannahs and the Marsh Forest also known as an ecotone. Thus far 118 species have been recorded. (EMA Administrative Record for Environmentally Sensitive Area: Aripo Savannahs Scientific Reserve)
It seems that the Aripo Marsh Forest is richer in species as oppose to the savannahs, but according to our survey that was done randomly, we found more species in the savannah than in the Marsh Forest. There is a relation with respect to area when determining species diversity. It is generally known that larger islands tend to support more species than a smaller is
The Environmental Management Athourithy of Trinidad and Tobago as well as environmental textbooks