The composition and properties of ecosystems.

All variety of organisms on our planet are inextricably linked.There is not a creature who could exist in isolation from all strictly individually.However, not only the organisms are closely related, but also factors internal and external environment affect the entire biome.However, the whole complex of living and inanimate nature are of the structure of ecosystems and their properties.What is this notion of what parameters characterize, try to understand the article.

concept of ecosystems

What is an ecosystem?From an environmental perspective, it is the total collaboration of all vital functions of species, regardless of class and environmental factors, both biotic and abiotic.

Properties ecosystems explains their characteristics.The first mention of the term appeared in 1935.A. Tensli proposed to use it to refer to "the complex, consisting not only of the organisms and their environment."In itself, the concept is quite extensive, it is the largest unit of the environment, as well as important

.Another name - biogeocoenosis, although the differences between these concepts is still small it is.

main property is ecosystem in continuous interaction within them organic and inorganic matter, energy, heat distribution, migration of elements, the combined action of living things on each other.In total there are several basic characteristic traits, which are called properties.

Basic properties of ecosystems

most important of them can be divided into three:

  • self-regulation;
  • sustainability;
  • self-reproduction;
  • change one to the other;
  • integrity;
  • emergent properties.

On the question of what is the main property of ecosystems that can be answered in different ways.All of them are important, it is only their combined presence of this concept allows to exist.Let us consider in detail each characteristic trait to grasp its importance and understand the essence.

Self-regulation of ecosystems

This is the main feature of the ecosystem, which implies self-management within the life of each biogeocoenose.That is a group of organisms that is in close relationship with other living beings, as well as environmental factors, directly affects the entire structure as a whole.It is their ability to live can affect the stability and self-regulation ecosystem.

For example, if we talk about predators, they feed on grazing animals of one species exactly as long as their number is reduced.Next stops eating and predator switches to another power source (ie, a different kind of herbivorous creatures).Thus, it appears that the species is not completely destroyed, it remains alone to restore the required index number.

within the ecosystem can not occur naturally disappearance of species as a result of eating other individuals.This is self-regulation.I.e. animals, plants, fungi, microorganisms mutually monitor each other, despite the fact that they are food.

also self-regulation - a basic property of ecosystems also because through it in a controlled process of converting various forms of energy.Inorganic substances, organic compounds, elements - all are closely related and general circulation.Plants use solar energy directly, animals eat plants, translating that energy into chemical bonds after they die again decomposed by microorganisms to their inorganic.The process is continuous and cyclic, without outside interference, which is called self-regulation.


There are other properties of ecosystems.Self-regulation is closely related to sustainability.How much it will survive this or that ecosystem, as it continues, and whether there is a change on the other, depends on a number of reasons.

truly sustainable is the one, in which there is no interference on the part of man.It constantly consistently high number of all kinds of organisms do not occur under the influence of changes in ambient conditions or they are insignificant.In principle, any ecosystem can be robust.

violate this condition can a man his intervention and the failure of the established order (deforestation, killing of animals, the destruction of insects, etc.).Also resistance may affect the nature, if the weather conditions change dramatically, without giving organisms time to adapt.For example, natural disasters, climate change, reducing the amount of water and so on.

The greater the variety of species, there are the longer the ecosystem.The properties of the ecosystem - the stability and self-regulation - is the foundation on which rests the concept in general.There is a term used to summarize these characteristics, - homeostasis.That is to maintain constancy in all - a variety of species, their size, internal and external factors.For example, the tundra ecosystem shifts are more prone than rainforests.For them the genetic diversity of the living is not so great, so.and the survival rate decreases dramatically.


If it is good to reflect on the question of what is the main property of ecosystems, it can be concluded that samovosproizvodimost not least, the condition of their existence.After all, without a constant playback components such as:

  • organisms;
  • soil composition;
  • water clarity;
  • the oxygen component of air and so on.

difficult to talk about stability and self-regulation.For the same, to biomass and the number is constantly revived maintained, it is important that sufficient quantities of food, water, and favorable living conditions.Within any ecosystem is a constant replacement of older individuals in the young patients on healthy, strong and hardy.This is a normal condition for the existence of any of them.This is only possible subject to timely samovosproizvodimosti.

manifestation of the properties of the ecosystem of this kind - is the key to genetic conservation of alleles of each species.Otherwise, the whole delivery and the types, classes, and family living beings subjected to extinction with no subsequent recovery.


also important properties of ecosystems - changing ecosystems.This process is called succession.There he was influenced by the change of the external abiotic factors and takes several decades to millions.The essence of this phenomenon - the sequential replacement of one ecosystem to another under the influence of both internal factors arising between living organisms and inanimate nature of the external environment for a long time.

also a big reason is the succession of human economic activity.For example, forests are replaced by grasslands and swamps, lakes turning into deserts or meadows, fields overgrown with trees and formed forest.Naturally, while fauna is also undergoing significant changes.

How long succession will take place?Exactly to the point where formed the most convenient and adapted to the specific conditions biogeocoenosis.For example, the coniferous forests of the Far East (Taiga) - this is a well-established indigenous biocenosis that more will not change much.It was formed thousands of years, during which time there is more than one change of ecosystems.

emergent properties

These properties of ecosystems are newly emerging, new and have not been the characteristic features that appear in biogeocoenose.They arise as a result of the integrated operation of all or several participants of the overall system.

typical example is the coral reef community, which was the result of cooperation between the coelenterates and algae.Corals - the main source of huge amounts of biomass, elements, compounds that are before them in this community did not exist.


Properties and ecosystem functions are closely related to each other.For example, a property such as integrity, involves maintaining a constant communication between all participants.Including factors of inanimate nature.And one of the functions is just a harmonious transition of different types of energy in one another, which is possible, subject to the internal circulation of elements among all levels of the population and by the biocenoses between them.

In general, the role of ecosystems is determined by the types of interactions that exist within them.Any biogeocoenosis should give a certain biological biomass growth as a result of their existence.This will be one of the functions.The increase depends on a combination of factors animate and inanimate nature and can vary widely.For more biomass in areas with high humidity and good lighting.Hence, its growth will be considerably larger in comparison with that of, for example, in the desert.

Another function of the ecosystem - transformational.It implies a directional change in the energy, its transformation into various forms by the action of living beings.


composition and properties of ecosystems and determine their structure.What is the structure of biogeocoenosis?Obviously, it includes all the main links (both living and abiotic).It is also important that the whole structure is a closed loop, which once again confirms the basic properties of ecosystems.

There are basically two major link any biogeocoenose.

1. Ecotop - a set of abiotic factors.He, in turn, is represented by:

  • klimatopom (atmosphere, humidity, lighting);
  • edaphotopes (soil compactor component).

2. Biocoenosis - the collection of all types of living things in the ecosystem.It includes three main links:

  • zoocenoses - all the animals being;
  • phytocoenosis - all plant organisms;
  • microbiocenosis - all bacterial representatives.

In the above structure is obvious that all the links are closely linked and form a single network.This relationship is shown, particularly, in the absorption and conversion of energy.In other words, food chains and networks within and between populations.

biogeocoenose This structure was proposed by VN Sukachev in 1940 and is still relevant today.

Mature Age ecosystem

different biogeocenosis can vary widely.Naturally, the characteristic features of young and mature ecosystem must be different.And so it happens.

What property of a mature ecosystem sets it apart from the relatively newly formed?There are several, look at all:

  1. Forms each population formed, are stable and are not replaced (superseded) by others.
  2. variety of individuals are constantly changing and is no longer.
  3. entire community freely self-regulating, there is a high degree of homeostasis.
  4. Every body is completely adapted to the environmental conditions, the coexistence of ecological community and ecotope comfortable.

Each ecosystem will undergo succession as long as it is not established a climax - the most productive permanent and acceptable diversity.It was then biogeocoenosis gradually transformed into a mature community.

groups of organisms within biogeocoenose

course, that all living beings within the same ecosystem are linked together.However, they also have a huge impact, and on soil composition, air, water - all the abiotic components.

accepted to allocate some groups of organisms by their ability to absorb and convert the energy within each biogeocoenose.

  1. Producers - those who produce organic matter from inorganic components.This green plants and certain bacteria.Their mode of energy absorption - autotrophic, they absorb solar radiation directly.
  2. consuments or biofagi - those who consume organic material ready by eating living creatures.It carnivores, insects, some plants.This includes herbivores and representatives.
  3. saprotroph - organisms capable of decomposing organic matter, in a way consuming nutrients.That is, they eat the remains of dead plants and animals.

obvious that all participants of the system are in an interdependent situation.Without plants will not be able to get food herbivores and predators will die without them.Saprophages unprocessed connection is restored the number of relevant inorganic compounds.All these relationships are called food chains.In large communities chains pass into the network formed pyramid.The study of issues related to the trophic interactions involved in science and ecology.

role of human impacts on ecosystems

This was a lot said today.Finally, the man realized the full extent of the damage, which over the past 200 years, it has suffered the ecosystem.It became obvious consequences of such behavior: acid rain, greenhouse effect, global warming, reduction of freshwater supplies, oskudnenie soil, reducing forests and so on.You can indicate the problem indefinitely, because they accumulated huge set.

All of this is the very role played and still plays a man in the ecosystem.Massive urbanization, industrialization, technological development, space exploration and other human actions lead not only to complicate the state of inanimate nature, but also to reduce the number and the extinction of the planet's biomass.

Any ecosystem needs protection from man, especially today.Therefore, the task of each of us - to give it support.You do not need much - at the governmental level to develop methods for the protection of nature, the common people should just stick to the established rules and try to keep the ecosystem intact, without entering into an excessive amount of their composition of different materials and elements.