Atlantic Ocean Ecosystem

Biotic Factors

The Atlantic ecosystem contains many living organisms. It contains coral reefs, sea turtles, sand dollars, flounder, shrimp, tarpon, seaweed, sea grass, and algae. All these biotic organisms interact with each other to basically shape their ecosystem...#ecosys6  http://www.lilburnes.org/Students/Habitats/ocean.htm

Abiotic Factors

The Atlantic ecosystem contains many non-living organisms. It contains temperature( gets even warmer every month from January), the saltiness of the ocean (3% salt), the density and water movement of the ocean (310,410,900 cubic kilometers), rocks on the ocean floor(spread across the ocean floor), and the oxygen flowing throughout the ocean(Oxygen flows freely through the ocean). All of these abiotic factors interact with each other and have a certain effect on the ecosystem...#ecosys6http://www.brighthub.com/environment/science-environmental/articles/63526.aspx

Carrying Capacity: The largest number of individuals of one species that an environment can support. Food, water, shelter, and space are needed resources for a population to survive.

    Depending on how much a resource is available can determine the population of organisms over time. If there is less algae than the population of Blue Tang Surgeonfish in the Atlantic ocean, many of the fish would have to compete with one another. The fish that do no receive the resources that they need may die out, leading to a decrease in population of that species of Blue Tang Surgeonfish. If there is also no shelter for some of the fish to live in, many of the fish can be hit by rocks and severely injured. If a fish cannot obtain resources to live, there may be a decrease in population.

Some limiting factors in the Atlantic ocean are hydro-static pressure and dissolved glass.

A famous predator/prey relationship is shark and tuna. Sharks are known to be the predator of tuna in the Atlantic Ocean biome. The hydrostatic pressure can make the ocean deeper due to the strong force of gravity pushing it downwards. The small size and quickness of the tuna comes in handy when the heavy shark is having a hard time moving due to the strong pressure force. Things like this interfere with these situations.

Energy Roles

There are many organisms within the Atlantic Ocean that carry the energy role of either a producer, consumer, or a decomposers. Producers are creatures such as plants and are the foundation of a food web/chain. They create their own food and do not depend on other animals for their diet. Examples of producers in the Atlantic Ocean are algae, seaweed, and kelp. Consumers are creatures that rely on other animals within the ocean for their own foods, unlike producers, Examples of consumers are sea turtles, tiger sharks, and blue crabs. Decomposers are creatures that break down dead animal and help them become part of the ecosystem. Examples of decomposers are Lulworthia, shipworms, and amoeba.

Most of the sea turtles get their food from producers, which makes them a primary consumer. Some tiger sharks eat sea turtles, making them a secondary consumer. Tiger sharks are eaten by great white sharks, making them a tertiary consumer. This whole process starts from the sun, which gives the producers energy. If the sun didn't have energy, producers could not make their own food, causing this whole food chain to collapse. Producers are vital because they begin the process and give the most energy out of the whole food web/chain.

Food Chains and Food Webs

In my food web, food webs are more realistic than food chains because food webs are detailed. In the Atlantic Ocean ecosystem, many animals eat a variety of foods, so it would be well expressed using a food web. It would show many predator/prey precisely and consistently.

In this food web, as you see, if one population was removed, it would create kind of a domino effect. The animal that eats it would have to go look for another animal. That other animal may already have enough predators, so there would be competition. This can cause decrease in population, and possibly if it was constant, a chance of extinction.

Trophic Levels and food pyramids

The algae and seaweed are the producers, the sea turtle is the primary consumer, the ghost crab is the secondary consumer, and the tiger shark is the tertiary consumer. An algae plant absorbs 1000 kcals from the sun. This gives the sea turtle a total of 100 kcals of energy. This gives the ghost crab 10 kcals of energy, and it gives the tiger shark 1 kcal of total energy. The use of a pyramid is significant because it gets smaller the more you go up just like the energy decreases as you get up the trophic levels. This is the reason why producers are on the bottom, because they have the most amount of energy. As you go up, less amounts of energy will be available for predators or any level higher up than producers.

      Photosynthesis

     Carbon dioxide, water, and sunlight are the reactants for photosynthesis. This whole process creates glucose, food for the plant, and oxygen, let out for humans to inhale.

     Photosynthesis occurs in the chloroplast cell of the plant. This cell contains chlorophyll, which works with the chloroplast to help make photosynthesis happen within the plant.

    During photosynthesis, radiant energy the plant absorbs from the sun is converted into chemical energy in which the plant uses to make its glucose and release oxygen for humans.

        Tropisms

    If a plant is close enough to the surface of the ocean, it still has just enough Sun to performs tropisms such as seaweed. Throughout the year, seaweed moves in order to stay ''in contact'' with the sun. Since the Earth revolves around the sun, the sun will be in different positions to keep up with it. Another example of tropism is when kelp must grow around rocks in the ocean. Since the plant cannot grow through the rock, it must grow around it. This is called thigmotropism. These are both ways plants move to set themselves up in a position that the plant needs to be in.

Without these tropisms, plants may not be able to photosynthesize as often. This means that less oxygen will be released for consumers to breathe. With this decrease, there will not be quite enough oxygen and can lead to a drop in the population of consumers.

 The Role of Decomposers

    Decomposers are extremely important to the Atlantic Ocean for many reasons. Without the decomposers, waste will stay in the ocean and potentially cause pollution. This can kill many creatures throughout the ocean. Decomposers recycle the matter and release it as nutrients to the plant and make the environment a better place. Many decomposers that are visible within the Atlantic Ocean are hagfish and lugworms.

       Adaptations

    One main adaptation in the Atlantic Ocean is the feel of fish scale. These texture allows fish to be prevented from harm and any kind of hurt. Another adaptation would be color of skin. Many animals throughout the ocean use the color of their skin to an advantage. They use it to blend in with surroundings and hide from predators.

    In the Atlantic Ocean, adaptations that are needed are gills (needed to breathe underwater), multiple eyelids (to be able to see in the water), and gas sacks for plants (to be able to take in oxygen to photosynthesize).

    If an ocean organism is ever placed outside the ocean from the Atlantic, they would not be able to survive because they need to be able to breathe in a different atmosphere. It would be like having a asthma attack where it could not breathe.

    Natural Selection

    Natural selection is when organisms that better adapt to an environment produce more offspring. This is important because this may determine the population of the species in the future. If they better adapt, they will somewhat live longer. If they do not, they will have problems. An organism that has been naturally selected would be the bluefish. This fish has been around long enough to adapt and predict. This species is now in good shape because it has produced highly. With the temperature and other changes in the ocean, it has learned to protect itself from past experiences with built adaptations.

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