An ecosystem consists of the biological community that occurs in some locale, and the physical and chemical factors that make up its non-living or abiotic environment. There are many examples of ecosystems -- a pond, a forest, an estuary, grassland. The study of ecosystems mainly consists of the study of certain processes that link the living, or biotic, components to the non-living, or abiotic, components. Energy transformations and ecosystem components are the two main topics that comprise the field of ecosystem ecology.
COMPONENTS OF ECOSYSTEM
ABIOTIC COMPONENTS| BIOTIC COMPONENTS|
Sunlight| Primary producers|
Water or moisture| Omnivores|
Soil or water chemistry (e.g., P, NH4+)| Detritivores|
These include the non-living, physico - chemical factors such as air, water, soil and the basic elements and compounds of the environment. Abiotic factors are broadly classified under three categories. Climatic factors which include the climatic regime and physical factors of the environment like light, humidity, atmospheric temperature, wind, etc. Edaphic factors which are related to the structure and composition of soil including its physical and chemical properties, like soil and its types, soil profile, minerals, organic matter, soil water, soil organisms. It comprises the living part of the environment, which includes the association of a number of interrelated populations belonging to different species in a common environment. The populations are that of animal community, plant community and microbial community. Biotic community is distinguished into autotrophs, heterotrophs and saprotrophs.
PROCESSES OF ECOSYSTEM
The transformations of energy in an ecosystem begin first with the input of energy from the sun. Energy from the sun is captured by the process of photosynthesis. Carbon dioxide is combined with hydrogen (derived from the...