Answer in Brief
Explain the classification of ecosystem.
- An ecosystem is a natural unit consisting of all plants, animals and micro-organisms in an area functioning together with all of the non-living factors of the environment.
- According to British ecologist Arthur Tansley (1935), an ecosystem is a system that arises from the integration of all living and non-living factors of the environment.
- There are many examples of ecosystems – a pond, a forest, an estuary, a grassland.
- Early conceptions of an ecosystem were as a structured functional unit in equilibrium of energy and matter flows among constituent elements. Politically, the concept has become important, since the Convention on Biological Diversity in 1992, (CBD), signed by almost 200 nations.
- The CBD formulates the concept in the following definition: "Ecosystem" means a dynamic complex of plant, animal and micro-organism communities and their non-living environment interacting as a functional unit".
- An ecosystem may be natural (like forest, lake, ocean etc.) or man-made (such as an aquarium, a crop field etc.), temporary (like a rain fed pond) or permanent (like a lake, forest, etc.), aquatic (such as pond, ocean etc.) or terrestrial (like grassland, forest, etc.).
- Natural Ecosystem: Natural Ecosystem may be terrestrial (like desert, forest, etc.) or aquatic like pond, river, lake, etc. A natural ecosystem is a biological environment that is found in nature (e.g. a forest) rather than created or altered by man (e.g. a farm).
- Artificial Ecosystem: Humans have modified some ecosystems for their own benefits and these are Artificial Ecosystem. They can be terrestrial (crop field, garden etc.) or aquatic (aquarium, dam, manmade pond etc.).
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