Ecosystem functions examples
Thus, we can say that ecosystems are a natural system formed by two main elements; A set of living beings (It is called biocenosis) and a physical place, where they live and relate (It is called biotope).
As the Earth is very large and with different characteristics, we have to begin to differentiate regions and if man has acted in these geographical areas. Environmental scholars highlight these main types of ecosystems that exist on Earth:
Remember that biotic factors are classified by what is called Trophic Levels which are three; Producers, consumers and decomposers, whose graphic representation is by the trophic or ecological pyramid to visualize the transfer of energy and food relationships. You can see more from:
It takes into account the complex interactions between coexisting organisms (plants, algae, animals, bacteria, fungi and others) that make up the community (Remember the concept of biocenosis) and energy flows;
What are the ecological functions?
Soil performs central ecosystem functions, such as food and biomass production, nutrient recycling or sustaining the biodiversity of terrestrial ecosystems. Soil also contributes to climate regulation through carbon sequestration in the form of organic matter and reduces greenhouse gas emissions, such as CO2 or N2O. It also plays a fundamental role in the regulation of the water cycle, thanks to water retention, in the degradation and immobilization of pollutants, which allows us to provide clean air, soil and water, and in sustaining human activities and constructions, so the role of soil in food and forestry production and climate regulation are key research areas in a context of global human population growth and changing climate and land use patterns. Soil degradation as a result of anthropogenic activities affects large areas of the world and directly impacts soil functions, driving both the need to prevent degradation through the adoption of sustainable management practices and the improvement of degraded soil restoration technologies.
What is the function of an ecosystem?
The vital functions of living beings are those that allow them to survive and maintain a constant relationship with the environment. We know that organisms have a level of organization of molecules that is quite complex but necessary for life to exist as we know it. The relationship with the environment of any living being is fundamental. This relationship establishes interactions with its ecosystem, individuals of the same species and with other different species, whether flora or fauna.
These vital functions are usually summarized as nutrition, relationship and reproduction. However, this is too simple a form to encompass everything that each of the vital functions of living beings has.
It is the first function that allows individuals to grow and develop by dividing the necessary nutrients. These nutrients are incorporated into the organism to develop organs and tissues. They can follow an autotrophic feeding, which is the nutrition of plants and vegetables, or a heterotrophic feeding. All the processes that take place during nutrition establish complex networks known as trophic chains. Trophic chains reign in ecosystems and are the basis of feeding.
What controls the functioning of ecosystems
The vital functions of living beings are those biological functional characteristics shared by each and every living being. Unlike inert beings, living beings have complex functions and characteristics throughout their growth and development; thus, since living beings are organisms with a complex molecular organization, their vital functions are those that allow them to survive and maintain a constant relationship with their environment, both with individuals of the same species and with other different species. Each and every one of the living beings that inhabit planet Earth, however different they may seem, share vital functions. We can say that there are 6 vital functions of living beings:However, these are usually summarized in 3 common vital functions:In the following sections we will define each one of them and we will see examples of the vital functions of living beings to understand them better.
The first function of living things, nutrition, allows them to grow and develop by acquiring the nutrients they need to develop their organs and tissues. To do this, they can follow an autotrophic diet, which is the nutrition of plants and other vegetables, or a heterotrophic diet. Thus, the nutritional processes carried out by all living beings make it possible to establish complex trophic chains or food webs in ecosystems; this important vital function also includes the respiratory processes by which living beings obtain the energy they need to keep the enzymatic machinery of their cells functioning. For example, thanks to the processes of photosynthesis, respiration and nutrition, plants transform inorganic nutrients (water and light) into organic components (carbon compounds), which they transport to the different parts of their organism in order to grow. If you want to learn more about it, we encourage you to read this post about Where plants breathe and how they do it and this one about 105 animals that breathe through their lungs.To learn much more about this function, we recommend you to read this other EcologíaVerde article about Nutrition function: what it is and processes.