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What is a mixed ecosystem

What do we know about ecosystems? Do we know what they are and what types there are? It is likely that if we think of a forest we will quickly identify it with a terrestrial ecosystem, and if we think of an ocean, with a marine ecosystem. But what if we think of an estuary, a delta, or a beach? Would we classify it as a marine or terrestrial ecosystem? If you have ever wondered and you have not been able to decide it from AgroCorrn we give you a hand, because you are missing a piece of the great puzzle of ecosystems. Stay with us and discover what a mixed ecosystem is .

You may also be interested in: Types of ecosystems
Index
  1. What is an ecosystem
  2. Mixed or transition ecosystems – characteristics
  3. Types of mixed ecosystems: coasts and wetlands
  4. Wetlands
  5. The coasts

What is an ecosystem

Ecosystems are biological systems formed by all the variety of living beings that inhabit a community and by all abiotic factors (non-biological such as climate, relief …) with which they interact.

On Earth there are three main types of ecosystems that are classified as aquatic , terrestrial and transitional or mixed ecosystems . But what exactly are the latter? It is normal to ask them, since they are perhaps the least known in general. We explain it in detail below, take note!

Mixed or transition ecosystems – characteristics

Mixed ecosystems are those ecosystems that share characteristics of both terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems , resulting in a hybrid ecosystem between them, where both terrestrial and marine species live coexisting. These ecosystems are considered as transition zones between aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems .

Although it may be obvious, mixed ecosystems have an aquatic part that can come from a river, a lake, the sea or the ocean, and from another land part through which the various organisms that inhabit it can also move.

Types of mixed ecosystems: coasts and wetlands

The variety of this type of ecosystems is high, as there are sources that include complexes such as savannas or forests in flood situations, swamps, mangroves , marshes, reed beds or peatlands. However, all of them can be broadly classified into two large groups: coastal areas and wetlands .

In general, the biological diversity found in mixed or transition ecosystems is highly variable in terms of animal and plant species, since they can be both terrestrial and aquatic, or both.

Wetlands

Wetlands are the first of the two groups into which mixed ecosystems are classified . Specifically, wetlands make up the transition between inland water ecosystems and terrestrial ecosystems , and occur in places where the soil is saturated with water at least once a year. When this happens, the soil is starved of oxygen. Thus, in these wetlands the communities are neither absolutely terrestrial nor purely aquatic.

Wetlands can be classified under different criteria such as their morphology or their structure. As we said, there are many environments under the classification of wetlands, including swamps, marshes, swamps, or bogs, as well as mangroves (although they are areas of the maritime coast, since the tidal regime produces these flood conditions periodically) .

Wetlands are of vital importance for human survival according to the RAMSAR agreement (Convention Relative to Wetlands of International Importance, especially as Habitat for Waterfowl), as it is one of the most productive environments on the planet. Wetlands are considered cradles of biodiversity and sources of water on which many plant and animal species depend .

The coasts

The coast is the name of the union area between emerged territories , such as a continent or an island, with the sea, ocean or another large body of water ( submerged territories ).

The coastal landscape is shaped by various factors such as wind, waves, tides, biological activity or human activities. Therefore, its landscape tends to be unstable, as there will be areas where the coastline advances due to the deposit of sediments (beaches) and areas where it recedes due to marine erosion processes (cliffs).

There are numerous types of coasts that in some cases coincide with wetland ecosystems due to their interaction with bodies of salt water.

  • Coasts of predominant structural directions. It includes Pacific-type coasts (longitudinal), Dalmatian-type coasts (in contact with folding lines parallel to the coastline), Atlantic-type coasts (transverse) and volcanic coasts.
  • Subaerian modeling shores (erosion). It includes coasts of estuaries, fjords or coves.
  • Abrasion shores, that is, steep shores.
  • Accumulation coasts, which include barrier islands (long cord of sandy sediments parallel to the coastline), marshy coasts, marshes and mangroves, delta, dune, reef, estuarine or glacial accumulation coasts.

The coastal landscapes that are generated by the processes of sedimentation and erosion, among others, and that alter the continuity of the coast can be of the outgoing type, such as capes, points or deltas, or inlets, such as gulfs, estuaries, fjords, estuaries, bays or inlets.

If you want to read more articles similar to What is a mixed ecosystem , we recommend that you enter our Ecosystems category .

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