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Tropical refers to the geographic area centered on the Earth's equator and limited in latitude by the two tropics: the Tropic of Cancer and the Tropic of Capricorn. This is approximately the area between 23.5 degrees north latitude and 23.5 degrees south latitude, and includes all the parts of the Earth where the sun reaches a point directly overhead (north of the Tropic of Cancer and south of the Tropic of Capricorn, the sun never reaches directly overhead).

Tropical also refers to plants and animals that are native to this region, and to other aspects of this region. The noun for this area is the tropics. Tropical is also used in a general sense of a place that is very warm year-round, often with the sense of lush vegetation. However, there are places in the tropics that are anything but "tropical", even with alpine tundra and snow-capped peaks!

See also : tropical medicine[?]

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