How It Works

What is the least inhabited place on planet Earth?

In terms of species richness, tropical areas tend to have more species, with most groups of plants and animals diminishing towards the poles. There are some exceptions to this rule, specifi cally penguins, which actually increase in richness towards the South Pole. The deep sea tends to be less rich than coastal habitats, though highly adapted species do exist in these regions – such as some anglerfish – where sunlight cannot penetrate, but at low abundance.

Answered by Dr Ben Collen, Research Fellow, Zoological Society of London.