Aquatic Ecosystem: Endangered Species

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Aquatic Ecosystem: Endangered Species

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Aquatic Ecosystem: Endangered Species


It is undeniably true that seas, lakes and marshes are host to a great diversity of life. The Asian wetlands receive hundreds of brightly colored storks scanning the shallow water for tiny fish. Similarly, Brazil's mud and spongy vegetation are a favorite place for the marsh deer. The life in water is as vast as the life on land. The aquatic ecosystems are in great danger. Human-induced extinction crisis and the desperate need to conserve the biodiversity are the key issues to the marine biologists and conservationists. Despite knowing the fact that the aquatic ecosystems provide many tangible and non-tangible goods and services to the environment, they are imperiled by a number of human activities (Bolling, 1994).

The release of greenhouse gases by Humans is altering the global climate and the overall surface temperature is increasing. This increase in temperature is posing a potential threat to the aquatic ecosystem which is already under stress. Aquatic ecosystems are known to have healthy and self-sustaining conditions even though they receive very high rate of variation in hydrologic and temperature conditions. However, in the past recent years, rapid climate change in the environmental regime has exceeded the limits of the resilience of aquatic ecosystems.

The aquatic life in the ecosystem is undergoing massive degradation by human activities. There are a number of marine species that have disappeared and many are facing the state of extinction. The following paper endeavors to identify and describe the aquatic ecosystem along with the detailed discussion on some of the endangered species by evaluating their intrinsic value, uniqueness along with the diversity of species in the ecosystem (Brooke, 1995).

Aquatic Ecosystem

Water is considered to be the most valuable of all natural resources on the face of the earth. Aquatic ecosystems are naturally complex units that exist at varying scales. Ecosystem can be a single water body or a collection of many water bodies. Regardless of the size and scale, these systems possess common characteristics. All have physical, biological, and chemical elements that interrelate and act in response to one another. Aquatic ecosystems occur in or on water or its shore and beds with its biological communities and organisms (Daily, 1997).

The aquatic ecosystem is defined elements of the living things and non living things located in or on water or its shores, with its inorganic and organic matter, living organisms along with their habitats, and their related natural systems. The explanation encompasses all type of aquatic ecosystem, including wetlands, lakes, rivers, aquifers, streams and riparian areas.

Threatened Species

According to the 2000 IUCN Red List, 2,351 species are living in the aquatic environments. Many of the species are endangered or at the lower categories of threat. Out of these, 780 species of fish are at the brim of extinction. The fact is a sign of the adverse results of dam constructions, introduction of foreign fish and water pollution. Similarly, the reptiles of wetlands are facing critical danger from the habitat destruction ...