Nicolas Cuny 11B Mr. Nisbett
Due Date: 03/09/2010
On the 23rd of August, the three biology classes or grade 11 at Redlands College visited the rocky shore ecosystems at Point Cartwright in Queensland. Two different types of rocky shore ecosystem were examined, the rock pool area, and the boulder area. We first examined areas within the rock pool area. The rock pool area has several specific features which set it apart from other rocky shore ecosystems, including its geological makeup and position. It is made up of a flat platform of rock pockmarked with numerous rock pools; indents in the rocks which are filled with water and contain numerous forms of marine life. These pools can vary in size, from small cracks in the rock which have a changing water level or huge crevices which almost always have a level of water in them. Each rock pool has different species of marine life, in varying numbers. The platform lies at the base of a cliff, and is usually sheltered from the constant barrage of waves, except occasionally at high tide when the occasional wave will replenish the water in each rock pool. However, the platform can become quite windy, as there is no shelter from an onshore wind. The classes from Redlands College were constantly buffeted by the onshore wind while they were there, giving them an idea of the sought of conditions the pools are subject to every day. These abiotic factors define the type of organisms present in the rock pool area as the organisms need to withstand the effects of the abiotic factors and still be able to carry out the processes required for them to survive. The effect of each abiotic factor and resulting population in each area will be examined in more detail later in the report.
The second ecosystem examined was the boulder area. The boulder area consisted of a number of boulders clumped together on the sandy shore at Point