Factors that influence all ecosystems• Abiotic Factors • Biotic Factors – pH – Organisms – Salinity • Predators/prey/ parasites – Dissolved Oxygen – Turbidity – Lat/Long. – Observation of weather – Temperature – Light – Waves/Tides
Coral Reefs• Most biodiverse marine ecosystem – Biodiversity =health of ecosystem
Abiotic Factors• Abiotic factors – Temperature: Tropical – Shallow waters: Availability of light – Wave action – Nutrient poor: why water is pretty blue in color= lacks nutrients• So why is it the most biodiverse ecosystem when there are so few nutrients available? – Symbiosis!!!! What is definition?
Biotic Factors• Mutualistic relationship – Corals = animals – Zooxanthellae: zooplankton • Can’t live without another. Coral give zooxanthellae N, P, and CO2 and zoo give corals carbohydrates
• Forms basis of community that provides food and shelter to all other organisms
Types of Reefs• Fringing Reefs- directly borders landmass: – Ex. Cayman Islands• Barriers Reefs: separated from landmass by a lagoon – Ex: Australia and Florida• Atolls: arise from deep water and have lagoon in center – Most in pacific islands
Threats to Reefs1. Coral Bleaching : (take notes) http://www.youtube.com/watch? v=7EGvE5mTxRI&safety_mode=tr ue&persist_safety_mode=1&safe =active2. Disease 1. Black band disease-caused by bacteria 2. White pox- killed 85% of Elkhorn corals in Keys 3. Others3. Human Impact 1. Coastal development = increased runoff (leads to algae blooms like red tides) 2. Activities: snorkeling/diving disturbing corals
What is an estuary?• Partially enclosed body of water that is open to the sea/ocean(salt h2o) and has rivers and streams(freshwater) running into it.
Has characteristics of BOTH marine and Freshwater environments• Marine characteristics • Freshwater characteristics – Salinity – Flow of freshwater – Tides – Flow of sediments (sand, – waves silt, gravel)
What is a salt marsh?• Type of estuary – Located in the intertidal zone between land and salt/brackish water – Dominated by salt tolerant plants – Important for environment • to the food web and export nutrients to water • Provide habitats for birds and other land animals • Serve as nurseries for juvenile fish • Protect coast from erosion from hurricanes