• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Ecological Succession.

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Ecological Succession Succession is "A sequence of ecological changes in an area whereby one group of plant or animal species successively gives way to another, culminating in a climax community." This succession occurs in a number of sereal stages. A sere is a stage in a sequence of events by which succession occurs. The complete chain of seres is called a prisere. It begins with a pioneer community and ends with a climax community. This climax community occurs when the ultimate vegetation has become in equilibrium with the local environment. There are four main areas where succession occurs rocky environment called a lithosere, sandy environment called a psammosere, a fresh water environment called a hydrosere and a salt-water environment called a halosere. Two examples of a litosere are Sutsey a newly, formed volcanic island and Krakatoa an island striped of all its vegetation by a series of volcanic eruptions. Sutsey is located to the south east of Iceland and is slowly becoming colonised. The first colonisers of the bare rock on a lithosere environment are blue-green bacteria and single cell photosynthesisers, both of which have no need of a root system. ...read more.

Middle

This humus is created by the decomposition of marram grass. These grey dunes can support a much wider range of plants due to the increased water level, the reduction in wind and the increased humus level. Some of these plants include red fescue, gorse, bracken and heather. On the land ward side of the dunes about four hundred metres away from the sea are the climax of the succession the ash and oak trees. Hydroseres such as those created around the Talybont reservoir in Wales develop from fresh water lakes and pools. Initially these bodies of water hold little nutrients but sediment carried into the water will enrich the water with nutrients. The pioneer community will use these nutrients, which in this case are algae and mosses. These grow forming vegetation rafts whose surface supports bacteria and insects. Next there will be water loving plants such as lilies which us the nutrients recycled by bacteria from the pioneer community. Marsh plants such as bulrushes, sedges and reeds begin to encroach into the body of water as deposition increases. As marsh plants grow further out into the body of water there is increased deposition of sediment at the expense of the water and small trees may begin to take root forming a marshy thicket. ...read more.

Conclusion

There is also a difference in the plants ant the different stages of succession the early plants are said to be -r selection. These plants are opportunists with a rapid life cycle. An example of a plant in -r selection is the dandelion, which produces thousands of seeds. In contrast to this the plants later in the process of succession -K selected. Examples of this include the oak and ash trees. They are characterised by long lives and a high amount of investment into their seeds. This high investment therefore means that the seeds are better protected from the environment and therefore less are produced. "Zonation is the distribution of plants or animals into specific zones according to altitude, depth, etc., each characterised by its dominant species." Examples of zonation occur at a beach. The species of plants will vary in zones with an increase in distance from the high water mark. The factors affecting this zonation will be varied but may include things like strength of the tide and the amount of time they are underwater. The also occur on a mountain side where as the climatic conditions change the plants which can best survive in those conditions flourish thus developing clear zones. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Living Things in their Environment section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Living Things in their Environment essays

  1. What Factors are responsible for the success of Insects?

    individuals are produced, each of which is genetically different because reproduction occurs sexually. Insects have evolved other adaptations to ensure that reproduction is as successful as possible. The development of internal fertilisation is essential for any fully terrestrial organism. The alternative is indirect sperm transfer, as is practised by most

  2. Investigating the effect of four antibiotic agents on gram positive and gram negative bacteria.

    * Flame the mounted needle and use it to pick up another disc of filter paper and cover it with the fresh garlic juice. * Use the mounted needle to pick it up again and apply it to one of the sections in the same way as the Penicillin G and the Streptomycin, remembering to flame the needle again afterwards.

  1. The comparison of bacterial content in a range of milks.

    Must never be opened! When using the glass apparatus, special care must be taken as these can break easily and cause injury Make sure the incubator is kept clean-to avoid contamination Signed (student) Signed (teacher) Disposure of residues The milk agar plates must be deposited carefully due to risk of the bacteria advancing into pathogenic bacteria-disease causing.

  2. Evolution, Natural selection and Darwinism

    This has risen in order not to stop wasting blood, nutrients, and space to an organ, which no longer has a major function, and natural selection would tend to favour individuals with reduced versions of those organs, and thereby tend to phase out obsolete structures.

  1. Is the preferred habitat of moss on the North side of a Yew Tree ...

    In the forest I double checked my moss coverage calculations to ensure I hadn't counted them incorrectly. When sampling the data I will also try to refer back to the plant species pamphlet to ensure I was not confusing moss with other similar species such as lichen.

  2. The effect of competition on the distribution of marram grass.

    The reading should be taken only about 15cm from the ground as this the temperature where the plants grow. The number was then either read off the gauge on the thermometer or simply recorded from the screen on the temperature probe.

  1. Investigating adaptation, competition and zonation of barnacles, Chthamalus stellatus (Poli) and Balanus balanoides (Linneas) ...

    However, there is much overlap in the vertical distributions of newly settled larvae. The species compete for space. Balanus have heavier shells, and grow more rapidly. As individuals grow, their shells edge underneath those of Chthamalus and pry them off the rock.

  2. Sand Dune Ecology and Conservation Course Work

    At the end of the sand dune succession we see that because of most of the plants being tall trees a forest has been created and at the forest floor there is very little sunlight. Hear only specialized plants requiring almost no sunlight can grow as well as fungi.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work