Among the various and numerous biome classification systems that have been created throughout the history of ecology, the classification system established by the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) stands out, which identifies two large subgroups in the Biomes are organized according to whether they are terrestrial biomes or marine biomes.
In this AgroCorrn article we focus on describing the most important and surprising details of the extensive marine biomes, with the aim of knowing how to differentiate the different types of marine biomes that exist.
- What are marine biomes and their characteristics
- Types of marine biomes – list
- Coastal marine biomes
- Open and deep sea biomes
- Marine biomes of oceanic islands
- Marine biomes of tropical coral reefs
What are marine biomes and their characteristics
Marine biomes are part of the subgroup of aquatic biomes , being the largest biome (they occupy 3/4 of the planet’s surface) compared to all the aquatic and terrestrial biomes that exist.
As its name suggests, the main characteristic of marine biomes is the presence of marine (salty) water throughout its area of distribution. Thus, the main characteristics of marine biomes are always related to said composition of marine waters, highlighting the following characteristics:
- The amount of sunlight they receive (directly related to the depth at which they are found), allows us to distinguish three large areas of vertical structure within marine biomes: euphotic zone (upper layer, sunlight comes with relative abundance), zone dysphotic (sunlight reaches weakly) and aphotic zone (located deeper, does not receive sunlight and has few nutrients, such as abyssal plains ).
- Various physical and chemical elements constitute the main components of marine biomes, such as salt concentration, pH, and temperature. All of them establish specific conditions for the development of certain flora and fauna in each marine biome.
- The flora and fauna of marine biomes is characterized by a great richness of species. Both invertebrates and vertebrates and microorganisms share habitats and natural resources, maintaining close ecological relationships that allow the maintenance of trophic chains and other essential relationships for their development and survival.
Types of marine biomes – list
To learn more about marine biomes, it is useful to differentiate between the different types in which it is possible to group these marine biomes. Using the classification offered by the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), the following types of marine biomes are distinguished :
- Biomes from the back.
- Open and deep seas.
- Oceanic islands.
- Tropical coral reefs.
Next, we will explain in the next sections what are the main characteristics of the different types of marine biomes that we have mentioned, to know how to differentiate them between them and learn a little more about the ecological wealth that each of them hides under their waters.
Coastal marine biomes
Characterized by being located in coastal regions with biogeographic interfaces, that is, situated between terrestrial and aquatic areas, coastal biomes have an astonishing fauna and flora richness.
They are highly defined biomes, according to the different physical phenomena that act in their area of distribution, such as winds and tides. For this reason, they are also considered fragile biomes and sensitive to environmental changes or anthropic action, since any phenomenon of pollution, increased temperatures, etc., puts their delicate balance and the characteristics that define it at stake.
Learn more about this type of marine biome with this other article in which you can learn about the type of fauna that usually inhabit it: 60 animals from the coast .
Open and deep sea biomes
This type of marine biome corresponds to the regions of oceanic waters that cross the planet far and wide. Both the Pacific Ocean, as well as the Atlantic, Indian, Arctic and Antarctic, encompass marine biomes rich in biodiversity . Their marine flora and fauna make them one of the most important and vulnerable biomes on the planet, since their infinite ecological relationships require certain environmental conditions for their proper functioning.
Discover much more about this biome with this AgroCorrn article about ocean waters: what they are, characteristics and importance .
Marine biomes of oceanic islands
The numerous oceanic islands represent small points of marine biodiversity that are somewhat isolated and different from the rest of the existing biodiversity in the other larger biomes and with easy connection between them.
Among its main characteristics, the existence of climatic conditions typical (and sometimes exclusive) of the islands stands out, which allow the growth and evolution of species of flora and fauna very different from those that inhabit continental areas and even in other marine biomes. This fact, considered one of the most fascinating within the ecology and genetic evolution of species, turns oceanic islands into great sources of animal and plant wealth that needs even more specific conservation, due to the different physical barriers and / or temporary, it is not possible to find the same species in other parts of the world. A clear example of this is the island of Madagascar.
Here you can meet +13 endemic animals of Madagascar .
Marine biomes of tropical coral reefs
As you probably already know, tropical coral reefs are one of the biomes with the highest risk of disappearance today, as a result of climate change.
Present in temperate waters of different tropical regions of the planet, reefs serve as a refuge and source of resources for millions of animal, plant and other living species . Endless biological connections have been established for millions of years in these magical marine biomes.
Today, tropical coral reefs require strict and urgent conservation measures, since the drastic and rapid global increase in the Earth’s temperature directly and drastically puts their survival at risk. The results of numerous scientific studies presented by the IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) demonstrate the relationship between the disappearance of 90% of the planet’s reefs and a global increase in the planet’s temperature of +2 ºC.
Undoubtedly, these data allow us to get an idea of the magnitude of the negative effects that the current climate emergency will bring with it in the future, so that any work of dissemination and conservation of biodiversity will always be useful and beneficial to maintain the ecosystem balances both in the short and long term.
Learn more about the different types of marine biomes and others with this other AgroCorrn post about What are biomes, their types and examples .
If you want to read more articles similar to Types of marine biomes , we recommend that you enter our Ecosystems category .
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