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Water Biomes Essay

717 words - 3 pages

Water BiomesMarshland is covered with grasses, reeds, sedges, and cattails. These plants all have theirroots in soil covered or saturated with water and its leaves held above water.Marshes maybe freshwater or salt. Freshwater marshes develop along the shallow edges of lakes andslow-moving rivers, forming when ponds and lakes become filled with sediment. Saltmarshes occur on coastal tidal flats. Inland salt marshes occupy the edges of lakes. Theyaffect the supply of nutrients, the movement of water, and the type and deposition ofsediment.Salt marshes are best developed on the Atlantic coasts of North America andEurope. In eastern North America the low marsh is dominated by a single species, salt-marsh cordgrass. The high marsh consists of a short cordgrass called hay, spike grass, andglasswort. Glasswort is the dominant plant of Pacific Coast salt marshes.Freshwater marshes provide nesting and wintering habitats for waterfowl andshorebirds, muskrats, frogs, and many aquatic insects. Salt marshes are winteringgrounds for snow geese and ducks, a nesting habitat for herons and rails, and a source ofnutrients for estuarine waters. Marshes are important in flood control, in sustaining high-water tables, and as settling basins to reduce pollution downstream. Despite their greatenvironmental value, marshes are continually being destroyed by drainage and filling.Marine Life, plants and animals of the sea, from the high-tide mark along theshore to the depths of the ocean. These organisms fall into three major groups: thebenthos, plants such as kelp and animals such as brittle stars that live on or depend on thebottom; the nekton, swimming animals such as fishes and whales that moveindependently of water currents; and plankton, various small to microscopic organismsthat are carried along by the currents.Shore Life, the essentially marine organisms that inhabit the region bounded onone side by the height of the extreme high tide and on the other by the height of theextreme low tide. Within these boundaries organisms face a severe environment imposedby the rise and fall of tides. For up to half of a 24-hour period, the environment is marine;the rest of the time it is exposed, with terrestrial extremes in temperature and the dryingeffects of wind and sun.Life on rocky shores, best developed on...

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