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Environmental Science IP 1 - Essay Example

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Mostly characterized by high temperatures and a substantial amount of rainfall. It is a well-distributed ecosystem across all continents. More specifically, these areas are…
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Download file to see previous pages One of the classical examples of this type of the ecosystem is the Amazon basin of South America.
It has four distinctive layers; firstly it has forest floor. This is the bottom strata or layer that is highly obscured from receiving sunlight. Only plants that are adapted to low temperatures can survive here. Besides the layer of plants, it has a decaying plant and animal matter. Notably, the rate of decaying is high because of the humid and warm conditions. The second layer is made up of understory layer; this is found between the forest floor and canopy layers. Small animals and birds find suitable habitat within it because it consists of shade-tolerant shrubs, large woody vines, and herbs. Up to 5% of the sunlight reaches this zone (Lewis, 2009).
Canopy layer makes the primary area of this ecosystem. It has largest trees of 35-45 meters high which are broad-leafed and dominant. It has the highly dense flora including the epiphytes, bromeliads, mosses and lichen. Most of these epiphytic plants are attached to the branches and trunks of has diverse fauna, then the emergent layer. Besides the majority of avian species including the spider monkey, hornbill, African parrot among others are found within this layer. Lastly, the emergent layer forms the last part of this ecosystem. Unlike the canopy, this region is made up of a small number of huge trees that reaches above 45-55 meters. Hence, this part rise just above the canopy layer.
Tropical rainforest is often dynamic, their structure keeping changing. Like other ecosystems, both biotic and abiotic factors affects its existence. Biotic factors include organism that ensures decomposition of the animal and plants. These fungi, bacteria, and other microscopic organisms help to provide balanced carbon cycle. Also, autotrophs and consumers such as heterotrophs such as antelope and gazelles feed on plants and herbs and thus their lives are dependent on producers. Abiotic ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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