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Natural Ecosystem Study

Abstract

There are very many ecosystems that have many living and non-living organisms. In

these ecosystems, there is an interaction of both living and non-living. The living organisms

majorly look for food and habitat in an ecosystem, the habitat can be a Living setting or a non-

living setting. In every ecosystem, some factors make it complete. First is the presence of

competition, which could be for food or a habitat for the consumers. Ecosystems are set up in a

way that there is survival for the fittest and also there is the aspect of natural selection in action.

The living organisms compete for food (Orfor et al., 906). These come from other living

organisms or non-living organisms for some cases. Some bodies get their food from plants, and

these are called primary consumers. The second group feeds on other animals or insects, and

these are called secondary consumers. The next group, called tertiary consumers feed on the

secondary consumers. The cycle goes on up to decomposers, which feed on all the living

organisms when they die. The above sequence of actions makes an ecosystem to be self-

sustaining. This article will discuss the elements of one chosen ecosystem and analyzes it.

Identification
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The report is focusing on one ecosystem. This essay is going to study an ecosystem that

is a mix of grassland and shrubs. The ecosystem borders river on one side and natural forest on

the other side. In the ecosystem, there are many types of grasses. They include nut grass, star

grass, and many not named. The ecosystem has a range of trees some of which are indigenous,

and others are exotic (Schneider et al., 1150). The exotic trees in this ecosystem include the pine,

eucalyptus, cypress, and pine tree. The indigenous trees in the ecosystem include the teak, fig

tree and many more. Besides trees, there are other small shrubs in the ecosystem. In the

ecosystem, there are many birds. Some of them include doves, pigeons, the native bluebird, an

eagle, swallows, and many more. When it comes to other creatures in the ecosystem, there are

grasshoppers, crickets, rats, snakes, squirrels, hares, moths, butterflies, termites, giant ants, black

ants, beetles, newts, toads and many not named (Schneider et al., 1150).

From observation, the ecosystem is complete, and it can sustain itself. The reason is that

it has all the various producers and consumers in the ecosystem. The birds have different

selections for food in the ecosystem. The eagles feed on almost all the small crawling creatures.

They also feed on the hares especially the smaller ones. Other birds like the doves feed on plant

parts mostly the ones that bear fruits. The swallows feed on small insects. Some of the tiny flying

and crawling organisms feed on the grasses while others feed on the tree, some feed on the

leaves, and the flowers while others suck the saps of the plants — other animals in the ecosystem

feed on the plant parts. The grasshoppers feed on the grasses and some specific leaves of plants.

The rats feed on most of the plant parts especially the roots. They, however, do not feed on the

trees. The snakes, on the other hand, feed on most of the small living organisms in the

ecosystem. However, they feed on those who are lower than them.
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It should be noted that the snakes in this ecosystem are the small ones that slither in the

grasses and low bushes. They prefer feeding in the rats mostly. Squirrels, on the other hand, feed

on most of the plants especially the root parts. They dig up the roots and eat them. In the food

structure, they are so close to the rats, but they consume more. Hares in the ecosystem feed on

the fruity plants and also find pleasure in some of the grasses in the environment. Moths feed on

plant parts though there significance in the food structure because they consume less. Butterflies

feed on the flower parts, and specifically, they suck the saps in the flowers. Termites feed mostly

on dead insects while the black ants and the giant ants feed on specific plant parts and dead

animal remains. Beetles feed on flower parts while newts and toads feed on small crawling

creatures (Wellstein et al., 2473).

Patterns

The patterns depicted in the ecosystem are mostly migration patterns. Most of the animals in the

ecosystem keep moving out of the ecosystem while others come in. The trends mainly occur

between the chosen ecosystem and a forest ecosystem that is bordering it. The movement mostly

depends on the ability to move faster. That way, most of the organisms that are portraying

movement patterns include the birds, the hares, the rats, and the snakes, the butterflies, the

moths. The rest are mostly confined within the ecosystem while others show limited movement.

The birds are the ones that lead when it comes to moving in and out of the ecosystem (Török et

al., 2195). The swallow leads to this park because they don't seem like resting for a couple of

minutes in the ecosystem. Most of the creatures have established their habitats in the ecosystem.

Based on that, the population of the ecosystem, when done for each species, seems to be constant

at any given time. The value is also as a result of the random movement in and out of the

environment, the cause cancelling out (Henderson et al 321)


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Opportunity and confronts for managing grassland ecosystem

Grassland ecosystem is mainly affected by various challenges which are impacting the biological

community, society and ecological services (Ren et al., 542). Unintended outcomes arise from

market changes such as policy affecting the decision making of pastoral without reflecting on

current environmental trends for instance alteration in the climate of grassland. Several impacts

can have impermanent disruptions although, in some instances such as translation of grasslands

to land for crops, changing of livestock mixtures, water supply has pushed all these techniques

towards vital thresholds. These kinds of a dynamic system are pinpointing of complex adaptive

techniques and thus are not easily operated to meet the numerous state attributes of human-

environmental structures (Orfor et al., 906). The best management strategy may be

counterproductive to the growth of a more robust adaptive directive strategy which identifies the

existence of several states of dynamic. An incorporated decision-making structure for adaptive

management scaled to the matter confronting decision-makers is required. A significant aspect of

the required data is the scale of the climate information required in deciding on reasonable

changes to resources. The choice of management to minimize the vulnerability of grasslands to

climate and other several socio-ecological changes upsetting grassland ecosystems is required to

integrate research and the perspective of management to handle with the vibrant nature of those

changes they experience. The feasibility of this decision by management will vary with the

capacity of adaptive of the socio-ecological system as well as the linkages between ecosystems

services, natural resources and the conditions of socio-economic. The framing of management

acts is required to clarify metrics and the objectives of management which would affect the

grassland ecosystem (Ren et al., 542).


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Methods suggested comprises involvement of shareholders at several scales to address different

scales of alteration in the socio-ecological system, establish a coordinated means of

implementing rules and decision management influencing livelihoods and ecosystem services of

the grasslands ecosystem and building adaptive impermanent as well as spatial dynamics of the

grasslands resources together with pastoral communities. This interactive method will make the

integration of doubtful and evaluation of risks, decision making and link modeling at suitable

spatial as well as temporal scales, and offers a mechanism for distribution of knowledge and

resources all over the communities influenced and planners (Henderson et al 321).

Several vital elements are employed such as recognizing certain concerns of the

communities and for the matters of the communities’ faces within the described socio-economic

context. Degrees of evolution space and time may be set bat a suitable level with the help of the

shareholders' communities. Often, momentum scale is required to be matched with several

matters which gives feedback at distinct scales, for instance, rainfall at different times of the

year, heat waves at significant period of the plant development or production of livestock or

other triggers related with climate which influences maintenances of infrastructure or influences

liberation of ecosystem services. Recognizing the significant time scales which involve making

decisions qualified to be vital components of the strategically adaptation structure to enhance

that suitable climate and other scenario data from several climatic forecasting which are more

allied to the significant management or deciding any given situations is a fundamental

contemplation. The last step is to establish multiple multidecadal approaches to handle probable

changes in the climate and the influence on the socio-environmental system. This method of

arrangement is considered to be recursive. This is to means that, it is supposed to be revisited


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annually (Ren et al., 542). Integration into this kind of structure is required to frequently retrieve

data regarding changes in the system.

Biodiversity

Based on the literature of observation, it is found with little evidence that high scale biodiversity

is found in the natural and semi-natural grasslands which are strongly linked with the supply of

ES. Grasslands play a prominent responsibility in biodiversity-ecosystem operating research.

Thus, most of the investigation is from synthetic grassland experiments and biomass production.

The significance of biodiversity particularly of the high local species which is richness past 10

species remains to be assessed for most ES grasslands. Erosion control and water services

depend mainly on vegetation whereby structure complements in operation as well as traits of

certain plant species which is more vital than richness in species. This process is the most

probable case involved in the carbon sequestration as well as storage. The process of soil mainly

depends on a purposeful variety of soil organisms, but not species richness per ES (Henderson et

al 321). However, the distinct processes included in the regulation of climate are carried out by

distinct sectional groups of species pinpointing that a big number of functional groups and

therefore species can be required for multiple than for one ES. An increase in the diversity of

plants is often as a result of enhanced production of biomass in practical grasslands. Most cases,

the species which are engaged are familiar and they are not of preservation value. There are very

fewer studies examined on the grasslands. The mandate of rare species as well as high diversity

for the ecosystem is therefore unresolved and might be more related to resilience together with

the stability of the ecosystem than to process rates or multifunction of the ecosystem.
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Soil and Climate

Temperature and precipitation are the primary parameters of the climate and they are significant

properties which affect the soil and plants strongly to enhance growth. Temperature together

with soil moisture affects directly the development and nature of the soil. Grassland ecosystem is

overall taken highly productive because of biological, hydrological and geochemical cycling

between the properties of soil as well as the output outcomes of energy and mass. Different

regions have different soils for instance; grassland of the Southwestern region has different soil

types. The dissimilar types of grasslands are as a result of a unique combination of climate,

topography, soil and parent material. Given a large geographic variety of these set of the

ecosystem, a high scale of the inherent variability of climates, plant communities, geology and

landforms exists that influences directly rates of weathering degree of stability as well as

productivity site (Török et al., 2195).

Furthermore, Removal and vertical transfer and transformations around the soil are the primary

types of formation of soil. These are, therefore, affected by anthropogenic and natural

disturbances at the soil surface together with inside the soil profile. Past and current disturbance

influence the rates at which the process of forming soil. They also influence the amount that

grassland system keeps its resiliency as well as the capability to sustain the functioning of sol

which reflects stability as well as productivity.

Desert Grasslands

The lower region of the study area, grasslands comprises the deserts and is characterized by arid

climates which have limited precipitation. The Rainfall is seasonally distributed and varies in
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deserts environment. Upper desert in savanna, the rainfall is unimodal and gets most of the

moisture in the summer months in the season of monsoon. The lower desert, rainfall is bimodal

with two different precipitation periods. The first period is during the month of winter whereby a

half or more than half of the yearly precipitation is received. The rest of the rainfall is received

during the month of summer. The temperature of the soil is a vital attribute which has a strong

effect on the growth of plants and the formation of the soil. Two distinct soil temperature

regimes are identified in the grassland of deserts which are hyperthermia and thermal classes. In

general, the temperature of the hyperthermia regime happens where the precipitation is 250 mm

or less, on the other hand, the thermal temperature regime occurs in the desert with precipitation

ranging 250-450mm. Parent material and landforms of desert grasslands differ based to the

degree of weathering, mode of transport, slope and relief of geologic materials. These landforms

have soil which has evolved paleo-climate condition and continues to alter through the effects of

the current climate as well as disturbances. Volcanic activities, fluvial erosion or deposition are

the basic geographic process accountable for the growth and origin of landforms assisting desert

grasslands. Desert grasslands are attributed on gentle sloping flood plains, concave plains, lower

alluvial fans, and bajadas with level valley plains. Some relic desert grasslands happen on the

isolated mesas, terraces and side slopes of moderately steep hills. Insignificant patches of desert

riparian vegetations with affiliated of grassland happens along with drainage places sedimentary

lithologies and shrub lands which are adjacent and have regions of eolian and deposited wind

attributes which yield undulating dunes.


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Some of the dominant soils in the desert grasslands are grouped as Aridisols. We have vertisols

which are of minor extent for the desert grasslands happening closed basin topography. Entisols

are attributing of drainages and valley plains where the process of active fluvial takes place.

Several diagnostic soil characters assist to distinguish this order of soil and affect their location.

The chemical and physical weathering soil along with deposition by an atmosphere of dust yields

carbonates and soluble salts. Reactions of the pH of the soil vary from alkaline to neutral.

The interconnection that exist in vegetation, climate and soil relationship in an ecological

structure are explained by Henderson et al( 321) For example, it is identified that mesquite

(Prospsis spp.) might take place as a shrub all through the upper savanna desert. Mesquite also

occurs in the lower desert as a tree on specific alluvial soil because of rising water tables. The

arid climate soil leads to lack of perennial grasses in the lower savanna desert. The lofty

concentration of calcium carbonate act in kindness calcium phallic plants for instance as creosote

bush (Larrea tridentate Torre). The presence of heavy horizons surface which has clay in playas

supports rhizomatous crops like tobosa, on the other hand, soil texture rich in loam are suitable

for black grama scientifically known as (Bouteloua eriopoda Torr) then sandy soil texture are

controlled by sand hill muhly.

Main interruptions comprises of livestock grazing, fire, introduction of exotic species and

recreational acts. Succession and composition sequences of various desert grasslands plants

societies have altered because of the introduction of the livestock exotic and grazing, species of

plants and annual predominant. Some of recreational activities which also affect grasslands are

use of off-road vehicles; they have changed hydrologic soil workings in some specific zones.

Disturbances introduced by climate are flash floods and lengthy road in the time of terrestrial

summer monsoons (Soliveres et al., 265).


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Grassland of great basin

Soil found in great grassland basins varies from one grassland soils to another due to their

distinct mixture of vegetation, climate and landform (Borer et al., 0118). The climate of soil in

great grasslands varies from ustic to arid moisture regime as well as from thermal temperature to

messy temperature regime which is a mixture of ustic and thermal group in central and lower

region and combination of mesic and arid group in upper region of the savanna (Klaus et al.,

214). The place receives a maximum of 255mm of the precipitation annually.

Fungi, Bacteria, Algae

Bacteria are the most plentiful group of the microorganism in numbers nevertheless they are less

than half of the microbial biomass due to their small size. Bacteria they play a big role in the

community, since they help in decomposition of organic matters as well as transformational and

presence of several important minerals. Different genera of freely staying bacteria, for instance

Azotobacter, are able to fix atmospheric nitrogen. Enormous communities of the bacteria stay

either on plant or near the roots of plant surface where they nourish on secretion of root and dead

cell matters. Those members of genus called Rhizobium they figure symbiotic bond with roots

which belong to leguminous plants. Root nodules are as a result of colonization by rhizobia,

where they fix appreciable amount of atmospheric nitrogen which is readily available to the plant

(Wang et al., 100).

Fungi occupy for big portion of the microbial soil biomass because of the extensive network of

filaments. They work largely in the collapse of multifarious organic molecules comprising lignin,

which is a compound that is opposed to degradation of bacteria. Different groups of fungi form

association with roots of plants. Septete fungi mostly colonize roots which form non destructive
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interfaces among cortical cells, structuring association such as that of mycorrhizal. The purpose

of cytrid fungi in the ecosystem is not known, although they may help in controlling colonization

of mycorrhizal as well as the uptake of nutrients (Soliveres et al., 265).

Algae can be found in each conceivable area throughout the global, from thermal spring to arctic

tundra to also deep in business caves. They are found everywhere where there is light. Following

volcanic eruption, algae are the basic colonizers. The function of cyan bacteria and green algae is

to fix carbon compounds as well as stabilizes soil. A diatom is another group of algae which are

found in soil. These types of algae have an outside wall which is silicified highly. They are small

but they have striking beauty with regular geometric shape which makes them fascinating. They

require light and they stay in the upper surface of the soil so that they can easily access to light.

Diatom algae are the mainly widespread in alkaline and neutral soils.
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Work cited

Borer, Elizabeth T., et al. "A decade of insights into grassland ecosystem responses to global

environmental change." Nature ecology & evolution 1.5 (2017): 0118.

Henderson, Kirsten A., et al. "Landowner perceptions of the value of natural forest and natural

grassland in a mosaic ecosystem in southern Brazil." Sustainability science 11.2 (2016): 321-

330.

Klaus, Valentin H., et al. "Plant diversity moderates drought stress in grasslands: Implications

from a large real-world study on 13C natural abundances." Science of the total environment 566

(2016): 215-222.

Orford, Katherine A., et al. "Modest enhancements to conventional grassland diversity improve

the provision of pollination services." Journal of Applied Ecology 53.3 (2016): 906-915.

Ren, Yanjiao, Yihe Lü, and Bojie Fu. "Quantifying the impacts of grassland restoration on

biodiversity and ecosystem services in China: A meta-analysis." Ecological Engineering 95

(2016): 542-550.

Schneider, Gudrun, et al. "Spillover from adjacent crop and forest habitats shapes carabid beetle

assemblages in fragmented semi-natural grasslands." Oecologia 182.4 (2016): 1141-1150.

Török, Péter, et al. "Step (pe) up! Raising the profile of the Palaearctic natural grasslands."

(2016): 2187-2195.

Wang, Zhan, et al. "What is the main cause of grassland degradation? A case study of grassland

ecosystem service in the middle-south Inner Mongolia." Catena 150 (2017): 100-107.
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Wellstein, Camilla, et al. "Effects of extreme drought on specific leaf area of grassland species:

A meta‐analysis of experimental studies in temperate and sub‐Mediterranean systems." Global

change biology 23.6 (2017): 2473-2481.

Soliveres, Santiago, et al. "Locally rare species influence grassland ecosystem

multifunctionality." Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological

Sciences 371.1694 (2016): 20150269.