What Exactly is an Ecosystem?
An ecosystem is a system or functional unit of the environment in which biotic and abiotic components interact. Water, soil, atmosphere, and temperature are examples of abiotic components.
In an ecosystem, living entities form an inner hierarchy consisting of producers, decomposers, and consumers. They interact with one another, forming the food chain within the ecosystem.
Linking within these food webs forms the foundation for complex webs and ecosystem attributes to exist.
All of the necessary materials for survival are derived from the ecosystem’s abiotic components, such as radiation, energy, and water, which are obtained through various biological cycles.
Energy travels in a single direction in an ecosystem.
Types of Ecosystem
The various types of ecosystem include:
- Forest Ecosystem
- Grassland Ecosystem
- Desert Ecosystem
- Tundra Ecosystem
- Freshwater Ecosystem
- Marine Ecosystem
Forest ecosystems are areas of the landscape dominated by trees, and they are made up of biologically integrated communities of plants, animals, and microbes, as well as the local soils and atmospheres (climates) with which they interact.
A grassland ecosystem is one in which grasses and other herbaceous (non-woody) plants dominate the vegetation.
Desert ecosystems are dry environments with little vegetation, extreme temperatures, and annual precipitation of less than 10 inches.
Tundra ecosystems are treeless areas found in the Arctic and on mountain peaks where the climate is cold and windy and rainfall is scarce.
Freshwater ecosystems are a subset of aquatic ecosystems on Earth. Lakes, ponds, rivers, streams, springs, bogs, and wetlands are examples.
Marine ecosystems are aquatic environments with high dissolved salt levels.
What Exactly is a Biome?
Biomes on Earth, on the other hand, are zones defined by large-scale climate and vegetation characteristics.
They are a climate-controlled group of entities.
They are typically identified and named after the life form, such as grassland, coral reef, tropical rain forests, and so on.
Because of similarities in natural selection patterns, species in different parts of a biome may appear similar in behavior and appearance.
Types of Biome
Biomes are divided into three types, namely
- Terrestrial Biomes
- Freshwater Biomes
- Marine Biomes
There are eight major terrestrial biomes, which are as follows:
- Tropical rainforests
- Subtropical deserts
- Temperate grasslands
- Temperate forests
- Boreal forests, and
- Arctic tundra.
Freshwater biomes include lakes, ponds, rivers, streams, and wetlands, which differ in depth, water movement, and other abiotic factors.
Oceans, coral reefs, and estuaries are examples of marine biomes.
Differences Between Biome And Ecosystem
The following are the distinctions between biome and ecosystem:
- A biome is a large land area with its own climate, plants, and animals, whereas an ecosystem is the interaction of biotic and abiotic components.
- The geographical area of biomes is large, whereas the geographical area of ecosystems is small.
- Biomes are influenced by climatic factors such as rainfall, ice, snow, temperature, and so on, whereas ecosystems are not.
- Biomes are made up of multiple ecosystems, each of which contains biotic and abiotic factors.
- Plant and animal species abound in biomes, whereas the ecosystem is smaller in size and contains fewer plant and animal species.
- Not all organisms in a biome interact with each other, whereas all organisms in an ecosystem interact in trophic levels and the food web.
- Latitude has an effect on biomes but has no effect on ecosystems.
- Biomes include deserts, grasslands, tundra, and tropical rainforests, while ecosystems include ponds, coral reefs, and so on.
- An ecosystem is much smaller than a biome because biomes can be found all over the world.
- A biome, unlike an ecosystem, is heavily influenced by physical factors such as climatic conditions such as snow, temperature, rainfall, and so on.
- The latitude has no effect on an ecosystem, but it does on a biome.
- In an ecosystem, all animals interact in trophic interactions of food webs and chains, whereas animals do not always interact in a biome.