However, the increasing human activities, especially during last millennium, have adversely affected this unique balance of nature. Human activities like industrialization, power generation, urbanization etc, are strongly polluting our life support system (air, water and soil). Such activities are also leading to an increase in green house gases in the atmosphere causing the recently recognized phenomenon of global warming and ozone hole. Thus, human activities many convert natural ecosystem into anthropogenic or manmade ecosystems. For Example, natural forests have been cut and the land converted to tree plantations or agricultural systems. Often, dam construction involves submergence of forests and conversion to water reservoirs. Space Crafts and aquariums may also be considered as man-made ecosystems.
Ecosystem: The Ecosystems are parts of nature where living organisms (biotic) and their non-living (biotic) environment are inseparably interrelated and interact upon each other. The term ‘ecosystem’ was coined by Sir Arthur Tansley (British ecologist) in 1935. Ecosystems may be defined as a dynamic system which includes both biotic components and biotic environment influencing the properties of each other and both necessary for the maintenance of life. Ecosystems vary greatly in size, such as a small pond or a large forest. Ecosystems are recognized as self-regulating and self-sustaining units of landscape.
Components of Ecosystems
An Ecosystem comprises basically two components and i.e. abiotic (non-living) and biotic (Living organism):
A. Abiotic Components: The Abiotic components of ecosystem are present in Soil, water and air. It comprises following non-living material:
a) Inorganic substances: Inorganic materials like carbon, oxygen, nitrogen, carbon dioxide phosphorous, water etc. These substances are converted is to are involved in the material cycle of ecosystem.
b) Organic components: These are proteins, carbohydrates, lipids, humic substances and so on that links abiotic and biotic components.
c) Climate regime: it includes temperature, light and other physical factors that delimit the conditions of existence.
For the functioning of an ecosystem, the sunlight is essential. The plants receive the sunlight and fix it in the form of organic compounds.
B. Biotic Components: The Biotic components of ecosystems comprises living organisms i.e. producers, consumers and decomposers.
a) Producers: Green plants and other autotrophic (self nourishing) organisms such as algae and diatoms that can take energy from the non-living environment and make it available to all living organisms are called as producers. Producers convert the light energy of the sun into potential chemical energy in the form of organic compounds.
b) Consumers: These are also called as macro-consumers photographs. Consumers are heterotrophic organisms that obtain their energy from sources other than themselves, directly or indirectly. Consumers can be categories into following:
I) Primary Consumers: They derive their nutrition by cutting plants. For example, rabbit, grass etc.
II) Secondary Consumers: consumers are animals that devour the flesh of herbivorous. For example: frog, big fish etc.
III) Tertiary consumers: Tertiary consumers feed upon secondary consumers. For Eg., whale, snake etc.
c) Decomposers: Decomposers or saprotrophs are other heterotrophic organisms (mainly bacteria and fungi) which have on dead organic matter or detritus. Unlike consumers, the decomposers do not ingest their food. Instead they release different enzymes from the bodies into the dead and decaying plant and animal remains. The extracellular digestion of here dead remains, leads to the release of simpler inorganic substances which are then utilized by the decomposers.
Components of Ecosystem, Communities and Biotic Regions and also Describe its Components