Just as people are living in houses and apartments, and in its nature is separate from the other system.They are isolated and can be said to be independent.They are called ecosystem and include many different organisms.In addition, they obey certain laws.In this article we will look at what is the ecosystem: concept, structure, purpose.And also tell you that they contain.


totality of organisms living together in a certain environment and interacting with each other in some way, by the term "ecosystem".This concept was proposed in 1935 by the English scientist A. Arthur Tansley.He did research the relationships of organisms and their joint development.By the way, he is considered one of the founders of this science, ecology, which deals with the study of what the ecosystem.The structure of the ecosystem is represented by two main components: biocoenosis and biotope.Under the first refers to the organisms themselves and their relationships, and under the second - the habitat.As a rule, partici

pates in the ecosystem of a complete set of living creatures from bacteria to higher animals.And surprisingly, the whole community is in equilibrium, that is, broken, restored again, and each of its members perform very important functions.


aggregate of some components of exchanging energy and capable of more or less autonomous existence - this ecosystem.Ecosystem structure presupposes all major organisms: bacteria, plants, animals and fungi.But some of them may be missing.In this situation, it makes sense to separate the concept of biogeocoenose.This term implies a society in which there is all of the above components.Moreover, biotic ecosystem structure may include only one participant, for example, only bacteria.This situation may occur in communities formed, for example, based on animal carcasses.Thus, the ecosystem and biogeocoenosis - is not synonymous, because the latter is a broader concept.Despite this, they are often confused.

Classification and structuring

Besides that scientists shared by some criteria ecosystem among themselves, they are also interested in their internal structure.Different approaches and viewpoints add up to a fairly complete picture, which allows us to consider each element separately.Not surprisingly, the structuring is used as criteria: the type of food and functions, species, location of the participants.Of course, it is necessary to consider the most important factor in detail, because the ecological structure of the ecosystem without speaking, for example, its composition, makes little sense.

As for the separation of communities among themselves, as a rule, the main criterion prevailed among the advocates.Another important feature is its natural origin and are capable of autonomous maintenance operation.There is already talking primarily about the nature of the intervention in the human factor, which also makes sense to designate more detail, but later.

By functions

trophic structure of the ecosystem involved in it delineates the type of food organisms.According to the cycle of substances in nature, nothing is taken from the void and can not just disappear.Obviously, it's only by the transformation of this or that matter.And here come into play two opposing groups of organisms: autotrophs and heterotrophs.The last - are animals and fungi that consume organic matter.The first (plants and bacteria) enter exactly the opposite.By the way, they in turn are divided into photosynthetic and hemosintetikov.

functional ecosystem structure assumes the same division, but under other names.We are talking about producers, decomposers, consumers and destructors.These two approaches are closely related to the concept of food chains.


Naturally, any system of this complexity is divided into several levels.The first and most comprehensive is the already mentioned biocenosis, which is the totality of all living organisms involved.Next, the hierarchical structure of ecosystems involves dividing by phytoplankton, zooplankton, and myco microbiocenosis.Each of these groups comprises a plurality of individual, called a population.Finally, the smallest unit is the individual (or the individual), which is a separate instance.There

and functional hierarchy.The trophic structure of the ecosystem, as mentioned, involves separation of producers, of consumers, decomposers and destructors.But there are several levels.So, it all starts with green plants that receive water and minerals from the soil and sunlight.Herbivores already belong to the first level of the consumer and consume herbs as food.In turn, they serve as food for predators, standing on the step above.So here it is seen its own special hierarchy.

By type

Even within the same type of organism may be a kind of diversity, and this is not surprising.The specific structure of the ecosystem - it is an important indicator reflecting the ratio of various plants, animals, fungi, microorganisms and so on. D. This feature is dependent on many factors: geographical location, climate zone, the water regime, the age of the community.Related species composition can be seen in thousands of kilometers from each other, if the main indicators are similar.In addition to the presence of certain organisms is important and their number.The most common in a particular ecosystem, representatives of wildlife called sredoobrazovatelyami and, accordingly, have a key role and create conditions for the survival of other species.

However, this does not mean that small participants are not too important.On the contrary, in some cases, special biotic structure of the ecosystem can give very accurate information about her condition.The presence of rare specimens of plants and animals can allow to understand, for example, how much clean water and air.

On the basis of the spatial

At first glance, the division of ecosystems, due to their location, is pretty obvious.Steppe, forest, desert, tundra, the sea bottom - set of organisms living here, no doubt, will be very different.However, such a classification is relevant only when it comes to comparing multiple systems and the differences between them.

On the other hand, each community will have its physical hierarchy.The spatial structure of the forest ecosystem, for example, is easily noticeable, it is divided into several levels.Nightingales build their nests on the higher trees and Wagtails prefer to stay closer to the ground.And inequality is obvious among the vegetation: trees, bushes, grass and moss are on completely different levels.Scientists set of these characteristics is called layering, or floor.

terrestrial ecosystems

ecosystem structure, located on land, may be very different, but almost always very interesting.They are everywhere: in the forests, steppes, deserts, high mountains, and each in its own curious.They all share ground-air environment.Meanwhile, the differences in them can be even more than common.For example, the structure of the forest ecosystem in the tropics would be completely different from that observed in central Russia.Moreover, the green area in South America is strikingly different from the picture in the South-West Asia.As already mentioned, the climate zone - this is one of the main but not the only factor affecting how an ecosystem develops.The structure of the ecosystem is too complex and multidimensional, so delicious and mysterious.


freshwater and marine organisms, algae, plankton, jellyfish, deep sea fish - species ecosystem structure, located in the ocean, no less entertaining than the Earth.Often, it can be even more complicated.The structure of the aquatic ecosystem in some features may resemble the ground, for example, here, too, there is layering.But there is a very important difference.It is here that the pyramid of biomass is reversed.This means that primary producers (here it is a diverse plankton) are much more numerous and multiply faster than consumers or consuments.In particular this applies to the sea and ocean depths, but also in freshwater communities may experience the same situation.The most interesting, that the structure of the aquatic ecosystem include as one of the smallest organisms and the largest.And they all live peacefully in proximity to each other.


importance of ecosystems is difficult to overestimate.First, they are all interrelated circulation of substances in nature.Elements from one system fall into other so that they are also interdependent.Secondly, they allow you to more or less maintain biodiversity - every community of organisms in their own unique, amazing and wonderful.Finally, all the natural resources that a person receives without thinking - clean water, agricultural land, fertile soil, fresh air - gives it this or that ecosystem.The structure of the ecosystem, as well as the entire biosphere, rather fragile, so do not forget about its role and should sometimes think about what the planet is worth it to preserve its riches for future generations.

Human activity

man their activities somehow affects virtually all ecosystems.However, if the effect on some of them indirectly, other test it directly.Deforestation, pollution of air, soil and water, catching fish and animals - all this becomes a serious challenge to preserve the balance of nature.

way, people continue to learn to model self-consistently functioning ecosystems, as well as trying to manage existing ones.Typically, the life cycle is artificially created community is not too large, and the stability raises many questions.Nevertheless, it would be very useful to learn how to manage ecosystems, because in this way it would be possible to achieve greater agricultural productivity, and try to rebuild.Unfortunately, the human impact on nature is evaluated negatively, because his actions cause a lot of consequences, in particular:

  • decline in biodiversity;
  • climate change as a result of the shift in the gas composition of the atmosphere;
  • reduction of forest areas;
  • alteration and destruction of unique communities and the environment;
  • depletion of natural resources;
  • desertification and soil erosion;
  • accumulation of household waste and pollution;
  • change in the structure of ecosystems;
  • thinning of the ozone layer.

worth pondering consumer attitude of humanity to the planet and to think, is it possible to preserve nature in its magnificent diversity.It destroyed not too difficult, but if I can create?