What is the ocean ecosystem

what is the ocean ecosystem

Marine Ecosystems

Jun 25, Encyclopedic Entry. Vocabulary. Marine ecosystems are aquatic environments with high levels of dissolved salt, such as those found in or near the ocean. Marine ecosystems are defined by their unique biotic (living) and abiotic (nonliving) factors. Biotic factors include plants, animals, and microbes; important abiotic factors include the amount of sunlight in the ecosystem, the amount of . Ocean Ecosystems. Bluefin tuna. Photo: NOAA/Marine Photobank. Each day that we are alive, we literally live and breathe the ocean. It doesn't matter where you live or what you do. If you are presently alive on the planet Earth, your life is inextricably intertwined with the ocean. The ocean is present in the patterns of weather that we've come to expect, the supplies of fresh water that nourish our crops and .

It doesn't matter where you live or what you do. If you are presently alive on the planet Earth, your life is inextricably intertwined with the ocean. The ocean is present in the patterns of weather that we've come to expect, the supplies of fresh water that nourish our crops and reservoirs, and the seafood that is so important to so many.

It is the source for half of the oxygen that you breathe. So what's the problem? Well, until very recently, people thought that the oceans were so vast that nothing we did could hurt them. However, as new science what is the ocean ecosystem us every day, we were wrong: our actions do have impacts that threaten the integrity of the ocean. Read the most recent statement of leading world fisheries science organizations here.

That's why Living Oceans Society is working to ensure a healthy ocean by protecting the four pillars of ocean ecosystems : habitat, biodiversity, food webs, what size bike for 5 foot 7 inch man water quality.

While these four pillars are part of all of our initiatives, they are at the forefront of our work in ocean planning. By protecting these four pillars, we will be doing our part to ensure that future generations will also be able to live and breathe the ocean.

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Pelagic Environment

May 18, Ocean Ecosystems: Open Ocean The realm of open water, called the pelagic zone, has the greatest volume and vertical range of any life zone. It includes the region above the continental shelf, called the neritic province, and the region beyond, called the oceanic province.

Marine ecosystem includes saltmarsh, mangroves, mudflats, lagoons, coral reefs, barrier islands, estuaries, the ocean floor, and the deep sea etc.

This ScienceStruck article highlights facts, structure, and lifeforms belonging to this ecosystem. The oceanic ecosystems consist of compounds mainly salts such as sodium, chlorine, etc dissolved in water, this salinity distinguishes them from other freshwater ecosystems. Would you like to write for us?

Well, we're looking for good writers who want to spread the word. Get in touch with us and we'll talk In the oceanic ecosystem, only two living things are capable of producing food using the process of photosynthesis. Phytoplankton are mostly microscopic and they are constantly drifted along by the ocean currents. Phytoplankton are eaten by the zooplankton.

Seaweeds are large-sized algae, which are naturally glued to the rocks. Ocean ecosystem also consists of a variety of herbivorous creatures.

Herbivores such as fish, turtles, and sea urchins mainly feed on seagrass, algae, and plants. Marine ecosystems can be divided up into many zones depending upon the depth of water and the attributes of the zone. The topmost layer near the surface of the ocean is called photic zone. Sunlight penetrates into this zone, due to which the process of photosynthesis is feasible. This layer is also called sunlight layer. The layer which extends from the base of photic layer to a depth of about meters is called the disphotic zone.

Small amount of light penetrates through water into this zone, which is insufficient to induce photosynthesis. This is also known as the twilight layer. The layer beneath the disphotic layer is called the aphotic zone. No photosynthesis occurs in this zone. Pelagic zone refers to the water body and the benthic zone refers to the ecological region of the sea floor.

There are a large variety of fish and other species that live in the different zones of the oceanic ecosystem. However, only a few of them have been displayed in the image given below:. The pelagic zone is the region between the ocean floor and the ocean surface.

This zone has the depth of about meters feet below the ocean surface. Microscopic plants called phytoplanktons are present in this zone. Sunlight penetrates this zone which facilitates the process of photosynthesis. Supported Plant Species: Seaweed or free-floating algae, red algae, green algae, brown algae, phytoplankton, angiosperms, mangroves, seagrass. Supported Animal Species: Bigeye tuna, dolphin, orcas, blue whales, sharks, jellyfish, sea turtles. The two main type of fish in this zone are forage and predator fish.

Predator as well as forage fish are mostly spindle-shaped, having large mouths, smooth bodies, and bifurcated tail.

Most of the fish in this zone have a sleek body. This zone extends from epipelagic zone at about meters feet to a depth of about meters 3, feet. Sunlight penetrates to a very little extent, which makes the process of photosynthesis impossible. Supported Animal Species: Squid, crab, cuttlefish, lancetfish, chain catshark, swordfish, wolf eels, bigeye tuna, calm, gastropods, krill. Most of the fish in this zone are highly mobile with scaled, muscular bodies and rigid bones.

They have big kidneys and hearts. Their gills respiratory organ are well-developed. This zone extends from mesopelagic zone at about meters 3, feet to a depth of about meters 13, feet. This region is very low on nutrient levels.

Supported Animal Species: Squid, sea stars , large whale, octopus, viperfish, frill shark, echinoids. Most of the fish have low metabolism rate as the zone lacks in nutrients. The fish have tiny eyes, fragile skin, faint muscles, and a slimy body.

This zone extends from bathypelagic zone at about meters 13, feet to a depth of about meters 19, feet. Due to cold and shortage of nutrients, very few species exist in this zone. Supported Animal Species: Deep-sea anglerfish, giant squid, black swallower. Most of the species have expandible jaws, large mouth, sharp teeth, and expansible stomachs.

This zone extends from abyssopelagic zone at about meters 19, feet meters to the bed of the ocean. The nutrient levels of this zone are very low, besides the low temperature. Due to such uncongenial living conditions, very few species survive in this zone. Supported Animal Species: Sea cucumbers, tube worms, viperfish, jellyfish, rat-tail fish, liparid fish, decapods.

Most of the creatures in this zone have very large eyes, and lack skin color. The benthic zone for an ocean consists of the ocean floor, the layer containing sediments, and its sub layers. The animals living in this zone are referred to as benthos. This is the part of the ocean which is near the floor.

Intertidal means a zone where land and sea converge. Due to its conguity with water, this region can have different types of landforms. Due to availability of water, oxygen, sunlight, nutrients, and humidity a variety of species live in this zone. Supported Animal Species: Shrimp, Mussel, starfish, barnacle, horseshoe crab, worms, mollusks, worms, echinoderms, brittle star, anemone, black-faced blenny, snail, sea urchin, oyster, zooplankton, bivalves, periwinkles.

This is the region of the ocean below the littoral zone. Constant pressure, temperature, and fair amount of sunlight make this zone very favorable for majority of the ocean species. This zone can also be referred to as the subtidal zone. Supported Plant Species: Macrocystis species, hudson, red algae, rockweed, nereocystis species. Supported Animal Species: Urchins, sea pen, kelp fish, barnacle, sponges, crabs, periwinkles, chitons, rockfish, star fish, sand dollar, oysters, anemones.

This zone is the same as the sublittoral zone. It is a region consisting of the shallow waters. It receives very good amount of sunlight and is rich in nutrients which is why the process of photosynthesis goes on smoothly. The subsequent sub-zones of benthic zone are bathyal, abyssal, and hadal zone. These are same as the bathypelagic, abyssopelagic, and hadalpelagic described above. The animal species surviving in this zones can withstand huge water pressure. Despite the low eyesight, the species from this zone also have the ability to camouflage in order to safeguard themselves from predators.

This is how an ecological balance is achieved in this ecosystem. No sunlight penetrates in this zone. An example is planktonic krill eating other planktons, which is successively eaten by a larger species. This induces the ocean tides as the Earth is in constant motion. They are described in the descending order of their size as follows:. Even though oceans cover such a large surface of the Earth, very little do we know about the oceanic ecosystem. Its beauty and richness is unparalleled. However, surprisingly it is a part of our nature that is still left unexplored.

Do you want to learn how energy transfer takes place in an ocean biome? The ocean food chain diagram and its explanation provided in this article should help you understand. The part of the Earth's surface lying between the Tropic of Cancer and Tropic of Capricorn is known as the 'torrid zone'. In this article, we will put forth more. For an introduction to gyroscopes and an understanding of the gyroscopic effect and its applications, read this ScienceStruck article.

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Skip to primary navigation Skip to main content Skip to footer Understanding the Ocean Ecosystem Marine ecosystem includes saltmarsh, mangroves, mudflats, lagoons, coral reefs, barrier islands, estuaries, the ocean floor, and the deep sea etc. Like it? Share it! Let's Work Together! Understanding What is Gyroscopic Effect With Appropriate Examples For an introduction to gyroscopes and an understanding of the gyroscopic effect and its applications, read this ScienceStruck article.

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