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  • Level: GCSE
  • Subject: Science
  • Essay length: 1329 words

Explain the factors that affect the distribution of plant and animal species

Extracts from this essay...

Introduction

Explain the factors that affect the distribution of plant and animal species. Using examples from the living world Different species of plants and animals require different factors in order for it to survive. Positive factors could encourage the growth of different species, hence alter the distribution as species struggle to survive, vice versa negative factors would decrease the growth of species in the area. Species of plants possesses characteristics that allow it to survive in certain conditions. This is why the distributions of plants vary from one area to another. Each species must be able to successfully capture these resources and use them to acquire energy and biomass for growth and reproduction. Yet resources are limited in natural environments, so plants face selective pressure for growth performance without excessive use of resources One of the factors that affect the distribution of plants is temperature. Most species of plant live in moderate temperature zones (around 35°C) is due to the fact that the enzymes, biological catalyst which speed up reaction in plant cells work at the best rate in an optimum temperature. As temperature increases the more energy enzymes have to move around and speed up reaction but up to a certain temperature.

Middle

Plants that cannot withstand alkaline soil the leaves will have brown or black margins on them before they lose their leaves. The availability of mineral and nutrients in soil is affects distribution of plants. For example, plants that require a large amount of K+ will not survive if there's not enough potassium available. Salinity has an affect on the absorption through osmosis. High salinity causes plants to lose water through osmosis. Halopohytes live in high salinity. Salinity reduces achene germination and corm sprouting in Scirpus maritimus and S. robustus.4 High salinity also reduces overall growth rate, height and diameter, root development, number of leaves, and other growth measures Mangrove trees are distributed in high salinity area such as coastal areas and able to survive due to its ability to get rid of excess salts. Wind influences the rate of transpiration, or pull of water and minerals as well as seed and pollen dispersal. For example Bog Labrador tea is distributed throughout Alaska, Canada, and Greenland areas of strong cold winds. Leaves which are smooth on the upper side, with rusty hairs underneath enables the plant to limit transpiration rate. The distribution of plants would be influence by animal in terms of seed and pollen dispersal.

Conclusion

High animal diversity is once again found in the rain forest. Animal such Black-billed and Yellow-billed Cuckoos are found in areas where there is a large population of gypsy moths. 8 Some animals are territorial and need large areas for feeding, mating, and protecting their young. Some are territorial during breeding season and occupy areas to prevent others from approaching them. There is high animal distribution where there is room to occupy territory and defend against other members of the species. For example, male mudskippers occupy mud ponds to attract mating partners and would be in competition with another male mudskipper if it invades its territory. Predators would also influence the distribution of species. For example, if there's a high number of a population of tigers in an area, there would be less distribution of deer in the same area. Competition is also another factor that affects the distribution of animal species. Interspecific competition occurs when two or more species are competing for the same resource. The outcome might force one species to migrate to another area. 1 David Ellsworth 2 David Ellsworth http://www-personal.umich.edu/~ellswor/About_Phys-Ecol.html 3 Communication and Educational Technology Services, University of Minnesota Extension Service. 4 Harold A. Kantrud National Biological Service, Northern Prairie Science Center 5 http://www.shef.ac.uk/ 6 Jerry Cates, EntomoBiotics Inc. 7 http://www.whalecenter.org/species.htm 8 ?? ?? ?? ?? Arisara 12J 1

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