FACTORS INFLUENCING HABITAT GEOGRAPGHY 1010 GEO 1010 TOPIC: FACTORS THAT INFLUENCE HABITAT What is habitat? What environmental factors limit the distribution of habitat? How do organisms interact with one another? How do habitat communities change with time if left undisturbed? Where do species come from? How do they change and evolve? These are question that will be discussed later. There are several factors that influence habitat: A habitat is a natural environment of an organism, a place that is natural for the life and growth of an organism (the physical place that surround a species).
There are different ways an organism interact with their physical environment in an ecosystem. As a habitat community a particular habitat is supposed to interact with one another and adapt. Some factors will influence a habitat will begin with ecological niche. Ecological niche describes how an organism responds to the allocation of resources and competitors e. g. by growing when resources are abundant, and when predators, parasites and pathogens are scarce and how it in turn alters those same factors i. e. limiting access to resources by other organisms, acting as a food source for predators and a consumer of prey.
But with time I mean evolution each will be detached. Temperature is the hotness and coldness of a given period of time. The temperature of a place can influence the habitat in both good and bad ways. Temperature also plays a big row in everyday life. For example, if the weather is good (no snow) it gives opportunity for more livestock to grow, and more carbon-diode to plants and also enough oxygen. But if the weather is cold or it snows, trees will be frozen, less amount of oxygen, carbon-dioxide and sometimes affect the growth of plants and animals. All species in a habitat regulate their own temperature in adapting to the system i. . one species may be cold blooded or warm blooded and these temperatures may all be linked with each of their functions e. g. for plants, flowering photosynthesis or even the germination of seeds. In plants they all have higher and lower temperature for their regular functioning and if any lack their required temperature, it leads them into survival mode. In higher air temperature the amount of humidity in the air is reduced and in this process the plants leaves loose water and the goes down to the soil. In cold climate species find it difficult to survive.
Most animals can’t regulate their temperatures inside their body while some can because, most of the animals that can’t regulate their temperatures are being controlled by the environment like, cold blooded animals. Most of them become dominant to survive and other hibernate. Warm blooded animals, humans can keep a constant temperature because of hairs, furs and fat which is also a very thick layer and regulates sweat keeping the body warm. Another influence that may affect habitat is Edaphic Factors. Edaphic factor majorly deals with the soil, how soil may need a certain amount of water and so on.
The soil is a major factor in determining the relative distribution and abundance of plant species within plant communities. When there is massive amount of organic matter in the soil, the soil will have lots of nutrients allowing plants to grow in various species and in different numbers. Considering erosion may affect the edaphic factors of plants due to loss of soil and its nutrients. Geomorphic Factor is another influence to habitat. This is mainly based on the steepness of landforms the elevation, and how it helps habitat in an environment or ecosystem.
The steepness of a slope affects the rate at which the water on the slope is absorbed from the surface and on a more non- steep slope how more water goes into the soil enabling it to provide a suitable moister habitat in the ecosystem. The soil found around steep slopes are often thin because they are easily eroded and on gentle slopes they have thicker soil. These factors may affect their exposure to sunlight and the amount of wind i. e. slopes which are not facing the sun tend to have more soil and slopes facing the sun tends to have warm and drier environment. Disturbance is another factor that influences habitat.
Disturbances are caused by volcanic eruption, storm waves, flood, fire, wind and other disasters which can alter the change of an ecosystem and its habitats. For example, fire can cause a whole lot of disturbances to plants and animals which may cause extinction to some animals and to plants may cause a long recovery period which may last up to 8years but after the completion of the 8yrs period the soil would have gained lot of nutrients. In some cases to areas with short grassland may not be an issue to some animals which live under the ground. The last influence that can affect habitat is Competition.
Competition is a negative interaction of species in a system. This happens between plants and animals and the main cause is because two species need a common a particular resource. And in this process it leads to survival of the fittest where by the strong survive and the weaker one will die. Predators and parasitism are other influence that affect habitat where both are benefitting from each other at another’s expense. In summary, habitat are influence by various factors in an ecosystem in which some of these factors are beneficial and some are not which may lead to balance or unbalance of an ecosystem.