What determines which species occur in a habitat?
The conditions in which species compete for survival are defined by the ecologial factors in their habitat. These are classified into abiotic and biotic:
- Solar energy input
- Climate, including rainfall, wind exposure, temperature.
- Topography, such as altitude, slope, aspect, drainage.
- Oxygen availability
- Edaphic, including soil pH and mineral salt availability. Can also include soil texture.
- Pollution- air, water, land.
- Catastrophies- infrequent events such as earthquakes, floods, volcanic eruptions.
- Competition for resources like light, food, water. Can be interspecific (inbetween species) or intraspecific (within species).
- Grazing, predation or parasitism
Species survive in their habitat because they have adaptions that enable them to cope with both biotic and abiotic conditions in their niche.
A niche refers to the way in which an organism fits into an ecological community or ecosystem.
This refers to newly formed habitats where there has never been a community before.
example: the first species to colonise bare rock are lichens and algae- pioneer species. These are the only species that can…