Works about South America refer in some way to its political, economical, geographical, historical or cultural way of life. It is a continent located in the Western Hemisphere, mostly in the Southern Hemisphere and it includes twelve independent countries. South America's major mineral resources are gold, silver, copper, iron ore, tin, and petroleum. South America is one of the most biodiverse continents on earth. South America is home to many interesting and unique species of animals including the llama, anaconda, piranha, jaguar, vicuña, and tapir. The Amazon rainforests possess high biodiversity, containing a major proportion of the Earth's species along with other geographical poinst of interest.