Main page Tasks 

The North America Portal

Location North America.svg

North America is a continent in the Northern Hemisphere and almost entirely within the Western Hemisphere. It is bordered to the north by the Arctic Ocean, to the east by the Atlantic Ocean, to the southeast by South America and the Caribbean Sea, and to the west and south by the Pacific Ocean. Because it is on the North American Tectonic Plate, Greenland is included as a part of North America geographically.

North America covers an area of about 24,709,000 square kilometres (9,540,000 square miles), about 16.5% of Earth's land area and about 4.8% of its total surface. North America is the third-largest continent by area, following Asia and Africa, and the fourth by population after Asia, Africa, and Europe. In 2013, its population was estimated at nearly 579 million people in 23 independent states, or about 7.5% of the world's population. In human geography and in the English-speaking world outside the United States, particularly in Canada, "North America" and "North American" can refer to just Canada and the United States together.

North America was reached by its first human populations during the Last Glacial Period, via crossing the Bering land bridge approximately 20,000 to 17,000 years ago. The so-called Paleo-Indian period is taken to have lasted until about 10,000 years ago (the beginning of the Archaic or Meso-Indian period). The classic stage spans roughly the 6th to 13th centuries. The first recorded Europeans to visit North America (other than Greenland) were the Norse around 1000 AD. Christopher Columbus's arrival in 1492 sparked a transatlantic exchange which included migrations of European settlers during the Age of Discovery and the early modern period. Present-day cultural and ethnic patterns reflect interactions between European colonists, indigenous peoples, African slaves, immigrants from Europe, Asia, and the descendants of these groups.

Owing to Europe's colonization of the Americas, most North Americans speak European languages such as English, Spanish or French, and their cultures commonly reflect Western traditions. However, in parts of Canada, the United States, Mexico, and Central America, there are indigenous populations continuing their cultural traditions and speaking their own languages. (Full article...)

Refresh with new selections below (purge)

Cscr-featured.png
Featured article - show another

This is a Featured article, which represents some of the best content on English Wikipedia.

Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg

The national flag of Canada (French: le Drapeau national du Canada), often simply referred to as the Canadian flag or, unofficially, as the Maple Leaf or l'Unifolié (French: [l‿ynifɔlje]; lit.'the one-leafed'), consists of a red field with a white square at its centre in the ratio of 1∶2∶1, in which is featured a stylized, red, 11-pointed maple leaf charged in the centre. It is the first flag to have been adopted by both houses of Parliament and officially proclaimed by the Canadian monarch as the country's official national flag. The flag has become the predominant and most recognizable national symbol of Canada.

In 1964, Prime Minister Lester B. Pearson formed a committee to resolve the ongoing issue of the lack of an official Canadian flag, sparking a serious debate about a flag change to replace the Union Flag. Out of three choices, the maple leaf design by George Stanley, based on the flag of the Royal Military College of Canada, was selected. The flag made its first official appearance on February 15, 1965; the date is now celebrated annually as National Flag of Canada Day. (Full article...)

Cscr-featured.png
Featured picture - show another

This is a Featured picture that the Wikimedia Commons community has chosen as one of the highest quality on the site.

Empire State Building construction
Credit: Lewis Hine, Durova
An old timer iron worker bolts beams during construction of the Empire State Building; the Chrysler Building can be seen in the background.

Cscr-featured.png
Featured biography - show another

This is a Featured article, which represents some of the best content on English Wikipedia.

Stelmach in 2009
Stelmach in 2009

Edward Michael Stelmach ECA AOE (/ˈstɛlmæk/; born May 11, 1951) is a Canadian politician and served as the 13th premier of Alberta, from 2006 to 2011. The grandson of Ukrainian immigrants, Stelmach was born and raised on a farm near Lamont and fluently speaks the distinctive Canadian dialect of Ukrainian. He spent his entire pre-political adult life as a farmer, except for some time spent studying at the University of Alberta. His first foray into politics was a 1986 municipal election, when he was elected to Lamont County council. A year into his term, he was appointed reeve. He continued in this position until his entry into provincial politics.

In the 1993 provincial election, Stelmach was elected as the Member of the Legislative Assembly (MLA) for Vegreville-Viking (later Fort Saskatchewan-Vegreville). A Progressive Conservative, he served in the cabinets of Ralph Klein—at various times holding the portfolios of Intergovernmental Relations, Transportation, Infrastructure, and Agriculture, Food, and Rural Development—where he developed a reputation as a low-key politician who avoided the limelight. When Klein resigned the party's leadership in 2006, Stelmach was among the first to present his candidature to replace him. After a third-place finish on the first ballot of the leadership race, he won an upset second ballot victory over former provincial treasurer Jim Dinning. (Full article...)

Symbol support vote.svg
Good article - show another

This is a Good article, an article that meets a core set of high editorial standards.

A roosting colony (Costa Rica)
A roosting colony (Costa Rica)

The Honduran white bat (Ectophylla alba), also called the Caribbean white tent-making bat, is a species of bat in the family Phyllostomatidae. It is the only member of the genus Ectophylla. The genus and the species were both scientifically described for the first time in 1892. It has distinctive, entirely white fur, which is only found in six of the roughly 1,300 known species of bat. It constructs "tents" out of understory plant leaves by strategically cutting the leaf ribs with its teeth; it roosts in these tents during the day. It is a specialist frugivore, consuming almost exclusively the fruits of one species of fig. Females can likely become pregnant twice per year, giving birth to one offspring at a time.

It is found in Honduras, Nicaragua, Costa Rica and western Panama at elevations from sea level to 700 m (2,300 ft). Due to habitat loss, it is evaluated as near-threatened by the IUCN. Its bright yellow ears, nose-leaf, and lips are a result of carotenoid deposition; the mechanism of this deposition is being researched as a way to understand and combat macular degeneration in humans. (Full article...)
List of Good articles

Did you know...

Selected panorama

Panorama of Mexico City from Torre Latinoamericana.jpg
Credit: Bart Sw
A panoramic view of Mexico City

Topics

Categories

North America categories

List articles

Select [►] to view subcategories
WikiProject Council project list icon.svg

Related portals

WikiProjects

Associated Wikimedia

The following Wikimedia Foundation sister projects provide more on this subject:

More portals

Discover Wikipedia using portals
Purge server cache