Banksias and beyond
Luke A 8B-Botany Bay Ecosystem
Description of Botany Bay ecosystem and organisms
Botany Bay has some interesting Abiotic and Biotic factors
Some abiotic factors in Botany Bay are the salt water, the sand that covers the bay and the soil/mud accompanying the mangroves.
Some biotic factors in Botany Bay are Crabs that live in the mangroves, the Pipefish that swim in the water and Leather Jacket Fish that are also found in the water.
In addition to the 3 organisms there are lots more inhabiting Botany Bay. Here are some of them.
The Silver Gull-the most common gull in Australia
The Pipefish-a fish in the Sea Horse and Sea Dragon's family
The Seahare-An Opisthobranchia (a family of gastropods) with a soft internal shell made of protein.
The Leather Jacket-A fish found only in the Gulf of Mexico and Australia
The Salt Cedar (Tamarisk)-A flowering plant, able to survive with a higher salt intake
The Honeysuckle-shrubs, very common in China
The Glasswort-A plant that thrives in salt water
Borrichia Frutescens (sea oxeye)-this plant can grow in almost all conditions and locations
Human impact of Botany Bay
One obvious impact is pollution. There is a big fine for littering in a national park, this prevents people littering directly in Botany Bay but it doesn't do much to stop it. The rubbish from every other park of Australia can blow or get washed into the river or ocean. The rubbish then flows into Botany Bay and pollutes the water and the shore. In August 2015 5 million litres of sewage leaked into Botany Bay after a power outage caused Cronulla's waste water power service to lose power. As a result sewage was discharged into the ocean at Woolaware bay. The risk to the ecosystem is the filter feeding species can accumulate dangerous microbes. The pollution can kill the sea life and make the National Park look horrible.
Another human impact is the planes at the airport just up the shore. Hundreds fly over everyday causing noise pollution and disturbing all the wildlife. Also the oil from the planes and the fumes all wash up to Botany Bay. This pollutes the water and kills a lot of the wildlife. One other effect associated with the airport is the population. Having an airport greatly increases the population, just like train stations do. The added population in this area increases the pollution and takes up all the land surrounding it.
Dredging is a process where all the sediment that's gathered up at the bottom of the ocean is gathered up and moved to a different location. This makes the waterways more clear and navigable. Although dredging is a necessary method, all the bad creatures that only cause harm to the ecosystem are moved to another area and repopulated. Also, hundreds of toxic chemicals that have been dumped in the ocean or had been left in the ocean are all now launched up instead of being buried.
“Earth provides enough to satisfy every man's needs, but not every man's greed.” ― Mahatma Gandhi
The Girdled Pipefish is usually recognised by its broad head, slender snout and leafy appendages on the dorsal ridges. It's colour is usually black or grey but can sometimes be an orange-brown. It's scientific name is "Festucalex Cinctus" The species is usually found in sheltered coastal bays, often on patches of rubble, sand or in algal growth in depths of 10m to 20 m. A pipefish's diet consists mainly of tiny crustaceans such as copepods and mysis shrimp but larger pipefish will sometimes eat small fish.
A Grilled Pipefish can suck organisms into it's mouth by creating a vacuum like function. This is very helpful because it makes it much easier to catch food and because it can get a much faster food intake.
Grilled Pipefish stay in shallow water to avoid the big predators but they also stay close to the seabed to avoid being seen and to camouflage. This way means they can avoid being seen and eaten but still find food to eat without drawing any unwanted attention to themselves.
The Leatherjacket is a common fish found in the shore of Botany Bay. It can also be found in the Atlantic Coast and Indian Oceans. Its scientific name is Oligoplites saurus. It usually lurks in salt water. They are also usually found around structures like jetties and docks.
They also hang around sea ground beds because they aren't very high up on the food chain and need the protection and shelter. A Leatherjacket eats sea grass and occasionally some very small fish and crustaceans.
The Southern Pygmy Leatherjacket is not a strong swimmer. It has small fins, a large rounded caudal fin and long-based dorsal and anal fins. So it hides in the sea grass to avoid detection from predators. This behavioral adaptation stops it from being found and eaten.
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- Syngnathidae - Pipefishes and Seahorses - Australian Museum. 2016. Syngnathidae - Pipefishes and Seahorses - Australian Museum. [ONLINE] Available at: http://australianmuseum.net.au/syngnathidae-pipefishes-and-seahorses. [Accessed 15 September 2016].
- Sea Hare - Australian Museum. 2016. Sea Hare - Australian Museum. [ONLINE] Available at: http://australianmuseum.net.au/sea-hare. [Accessed 15 September 2016].
- Fishing Monthly Magazines. 2016. Fishing Monthly Magazines : Leatherjackets – Friend or Foe?. [ONLINE] Available at: http://www.fishingmonthly.com.au/Articles/Display/2889-Leatherjackets--Friend-or-Foe. [Accessed 15 September 2016].
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- Gardening Know How. 2016. The Honeysuckle Plant – Growing And Caring For Honeysuckle Vines . [ONLINE] Available at: http://www.gardeningknowhow.com/ornamental/vines/honeysuckle/honeysuckle-vine-care.htm. [Accessed 15 September 2016].
- Wikipedia. 2016. Salicornia - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. [ONLINE] Available at: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Salicornia. [Accessed 15 September 2016].
- Wikipedia. 2016. Borrichia - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. [ONLINE] Available at: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Borrichia. [Accessed 15 September 2016].