Ceiba chodatii grows in dry seasonal woodlands. It ranges from Bolivia to Paraguay and piedmont mountains in north-west Argentina.

In Paraguay it is common in the xerophytic forests of the Dry Chaco.

The forests of the Dry Chaco are very dense, spiny and not easily penetrable.

The overall forest structure consists of:

  • 8–12 metre tree layer - up to 15–17 metres depending on species composition
  • 3–8 metre shrub layer
  • scarce understory, with dominant xerophytic species including Aspidosperma, Astronium, Schinopsis, Ceiba, and Bulnesia

Thorny microphyllous or leafless plants (Prosopis, Acacia), and cacti (Cereus, Stetsonia) are common, as well as species that develop tubercles for water accumulation (Jacaratia).

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