savanna or savannah both: səvăn´ə [key], tropical or subtropical grassland lying on the margin of the trade wind belts. The climate of a savanna is characterized by a rainy period during the summer when the area is covered by grasses, and by a dry winter when the grasses wither. Savannas near the equatorial belt, e.g., in Nigeria, support clumps of trees. The most extensive savannas—all important pasture lands—are in Africa others include the llanos and the campos of South America.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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