The ecosystem is a reciprocal relationship between living things with its environment and this relationship is inseparable. How is the ecosystem in the ocean? What are the functions and threats? Below following here is 17 functions of the ocean ecosystem and the following of threats.
1. The process of photosynthesis
Photosynthesis that takes place in the ocean has a huge impact on the ecosystem in it. Oxygen, the marine ecosystem needs oxygen.
The process of photosynthesis in oceans such as these, algae or marine plants together with water and carbon dioxide exposed to this sunlight and it will produce oxygen. Which the oxygen is the primary requirement for all marine biodiversity in the oceans.
Decomposers are a process of decomposition that occurs in living things that have died. The benefits of decomposers at the oceans are as auxiliary nutrient cycles returning to the ecosystem.
Imagine, if the marine living beings have died and there is no decomposition process there is garbage piled up in the oceans. That’s why decomposers have an important role in the ecosystem of the ocean. See also importance of decomposers in the ocean
3. The cycle of the food chain
The marine ecosystem will become balanced when the food chain cycle also spins on its speed. Examples of cycles of this food cycle; algae that do the process of photosynthesis able to produce its own food for its growth.
Algae were then eaten by small fish and small fish are eaten by large fish. Furthermore, large fish are eaten by predators. The dead and decaying predators are finally broken down by decomposers. That’s an example of a simple cycle of the food chain.
4. The place of development and evolution of biodiversity
Where there is a food chain cycle, this is where the development and evolution of marine biodiversity occurs. The ecosystem makes a place for marine biodiversity to grow, develop, and evolve for certain species, such as fish, whales, sharks and other marine animals.
The development and evolution of marine animals have been studied for a long time, that in ancient times it was evident that many transitions from the original marine animals turned into legged animals and they live on land. See also importance of ocean biodiversity
5. Big wave barrier
The coral reef is one part of the ecosystem that has an important role. One of them is as a protector or barrier from the waves of the sea or other natural disasters. Coral reefs are reported to be able to muffle large waves though and prevent seawater to enter the coastlines. Until finally the sea water will be muted back by the mangrove forest located at the shorelines.
6. Food sources of living things
Furthermore, other functions of the marine ecosystem are as a source of food for living things both living within and around. The food chain cycle in the ocean has many kinds, like this example. Phytoplankton converts solar energy to be used as food reserves.
This phytoplankton is then eaten by small fish. Then the small fish is eaten by the crane. In here, the stork can be eaten on by sea snakes or crocodiles where it is a high-level organism.
After that, the dead crocodile is decomposed by the decomposer. So, it’s indeed all the food sources in the oceans are needed by all living things even humans.
7. Sources of raw materials of medicines
In addition to being a source of high protein foods, human use of marine ecosystems to serve as a source of raw material of medicine. Soft corals have many bioactive compounds that can be studied can be used as anti-cancer drugs, anti-bacterial, anti-asthma, and anti-fouling.
Furthermore the sea cucumbers, marine animals in addition to consumed as food also has the potential to cope with various diseases such as stroke, diabetes, hepatitis, arthritis, and others.
Even a variety of fish such as tuna and milkfish have rich of Omega 3 which potentially increase intelligence and maintain heart health.
8. Protector or home for biodiversity in the oceans
An ecosystem will not be formed if there is no mutual relationship between living things with each other. Homes or protectors for marine biodiversity are coral reefs.
Coral reefs can provide protection against various biodiversity within. The presence of coral reefs also causes an ecosystem to form.
This is why the role of coral reefs is critical to the biodiversity of the oceans.Just imagine if coral reefs have been gone, how is the marine life, whether it remains balanced or not? See also threats to marine biodiversity
9. Climate change
Extreme climate change can be a threat to marine ecosystems. Temperature rising seawater can make some species move from one place to another. Even extreme climate change can lead to a number of species damaged and dead, such as coral bleaching found in many oceans.
Extreme weather not only threatens the biodiversity that lives in the ocean but also has the potential to threaten human safety. Fishermen are once the example. Sea waves with a height of 3 meters can occur due to strong winds in the ocean area.
10. The occurrence of natural disasters
The eruption of volcanoes, tsunamis, and storms are some examples of natural disasters that can occur in marine and coastal areas. Natural disasters are indeed unpredictable natural phenomena when and where they occur.
However, natural disasters can be known some of his signs. It was like the tsunami that once spent part of the offshore west of Sumatra, Indonesia in 2004.
Before the tsunami there were several natural signs of the earth, such as the occurrence of tectonic and volcanic earthquakes, a large roar from the distance, the sea receded suddenly, until the migration of animals from one place to another.
The high level of predators in an ecosystem can be a threat to other living beings in the ocean. Some examples of marine predators are sharks, whales, sea snakes, snake dragon fish, stargazer fish and many other predatory animals.
The high level of predators in addition to bringing threats to marine life, it is also a threat to living things that living along the shore. Storks, sea lions, crabs, even humans can also be their prey That’s why we must keep the ecosystem of the ocean as well as possible.
12. Ocean pollution
One of the greatest threats to the life of marine ecosystems, ocean pollution. Ocean pollution not only comes from land but air and sea as well. Garbage in the area of the beach which was then washed away by seawater content of compounds in it will pollute the oceans and even in consumption by the fish that live therein.
Researched for 25 percent of fish’s contents have been contaminated by plastic waste. Of course, the fish affected by this waste will have a bad impact on human health if consumed continuously. See also effects of ocean pollution on marine plants
Infection and fungus is a disease that is often owned by some marine fish. The cause of this disease is caused by changes in water salinity, too low or high pH of seawater, oxygen deprivation in the ocean, the presence of toxic substances and poor food nutrition.Currently, in the ocean, there are still many humans who are not responsible for disposing of waste directly to the oceans.
Waste on the ocean that is consumed in fish or marine mammals can cause illness for them. Many reported large whales stranded on the coast suffered serious infections and died from consuming waste discharged into the sea through of the cruise ships.
14. Coral coral bleaching
Coral reefs are one of the three most important biotic ecosystems in the coastal region. Coral bleaching is a process of damage experienced by coral reefs in the form of discoloration of coral tissue. Where the color of coral reef first colored brown that is changed into white.
The original cause of coral bleaching is the loss of zooxanthellae, a symbiotic alga that lives in coral tissue. Without it, the life in coral reef will be greatly threatened.
Another reason for coral bleaching because of climate change and human activities that make coral bleaching is increasingly widespread. See also importance of coral in the Great Barrier Reef
15. The destruction of ecosystems in mangrove forests
Illegal logging of mangrove forests on a large scale can pose a great threat especially to living things living in the area and even humans as well.
Mangrove forests are a place for living creatures to take shelter, nursery grounds and most importantly to protect the coast from abrasion and tsunami. The living of mangrove forest is not only small fishes, reptiles, crabs, snails, seagulls, stork, even to various species of plants found in mangrove forests.
16. The quality of marine resources is declining
Coral bleaching, mangrove forest destruction, and high levels of pollution can make the quality of marine resources decline. Without realizing it, the decline in the quality of this resource is actually caused by the human activity itself.
Humans are greedy for the benefit of, they willing to damage the ecosystem where the ecosystem is important for the life of living things in it. If there is no prevention of this, the fish may become completely extinct. See also importance of structural complexity in coral reef ecosystem
17. Mortality of biodiversity in ocean increases
The final impact of the threat of marine ecosystems is increased mortality on biological resources. Sedimentation, mining activity caused by sedimentation can decrease the intensity of sunlight required by sea creatures.
While sedimentation is increasing, mortality in coral reef community is getting higher. If coral reefs die, a fish crisis will occur. The fish crisis can be seen from the size of the fish captured and the decreasing number of catches.
Hopefully, the 17 functions of ocean ecosystem can be benefit for us. Ocean ecosystem should be kept as well as possible. The balanced of ocean ecosystem life will be balanced to human life too.