The large valley floors of California (away from the rivers that run through them) tend to be dry during much of the year. The principal plant life consists of annual grasses that flourish in the late winter and early spring but burn dry by mid-summer; however, these grasses are a major, rich source of seeds to humans, birds, and other animals. The valley floors are also home to many annual flowering plants as well as a wide variety of drought-resistant shrubs. The most significant examples of this ecological region in California are, of course, the enormous Sacramento Valley and the San Joaquin Valley. The valleys of Southern California are similar in character; while Owens Valley is higher in elevation and lighter in annual precipitation. Sonoma, Napa, and Salinas Valleys, being in the Coastal Mountains are richer in annual precipitation and, hence, vegetation types. Valley environment is a good habitat for smaller animals and birds --- e.g., rabbits and quail.
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