Botany Bay Ecosystem
By Alex Raatz 8 Green
Where and what is Botany Bay?
In botany bay there are many ecosystems including cliff and rock platforms, seagrass, mangroves, dunes, freshwater streams and parklands. The different ecosystems of Botany Bay is home to many different species of animals and plants.
Biotic And Abiotic Factors
Biotic - The living components of the ecosystem
Abiotic - The non-living factors of an ecosystem
- The salinity of sea water, estuary water (where fresh water from rivers or creeks meets salt water from the ocean) and fresh water
- The temperature of the water and the air
- Humidity of the air
Organisms that live in the Botany Bay Ecosystem
- Semaphore Crabs - usually founding the mangrove ecosystem
- Seahorse- usually found in the seagrass ecosystem
- Strap weed- found in the seagrass ecosystem
- Sea hare- usually found in the seagrass ecosystem
- Silver Gull- commonly found on rock platforms and wetlands
- Pygmy squid- mostly found in the seagrass ecosystem
- Mud crab- commonly found in the mangrove ecosystem
- Grey Mangrove Plant - found in the mangrove ecosystem
Human Impact and threats to the Botany Bay ecosystem
Protection: The positive impacts from humans is that parts of the bay is a protected nature reserve (for example Towra Point. This means that wildlife, plants, water and other features of Botany Bay are protected, reserved and managed for conservation, and are less likely to become endangered or extinct.
Dredging: Humans can also impact Botany Bay negatively. The development of the airport runways, which extend into the bay, have impacted immensely on the seagrass wildlife and plant species because of the result of dredging and erosion.
Pollution: Another impact that humans have contributed to is pollution. The city of Botany Bay has been heavily used for industry for many years and the species of the parks, wetlands and different ecosystems have suffered because of this. The leakage of pollutants can enter the water and contaminate it, killing or affecting many species of plants and wildlife.
The Study of Two Organisms from Botany Bay
Scientific Name: The Semaphore Crab's scientific name is Heloecius cordiformis.
Habitat: This species is found in the mangrove ecosystem. This ecosystem is very humid and very They dig holes deep in the mud and live among the roots of the mangrove trees.
Diet: Semaphore crabs eat small particles of dead plants and animals. They also eat algae and micro-organisms. These crabs are detritivores, which means that they eat detritus (dead organic material in soil).
- Camouflage- Semaphore Crabs can blend in with mud if it senses it is in danger. This is a structural adaptation and can help the crab when a predator such as a bird or fish is hunting them.
- Claws grow back- If the claw of a Semaphore Crab is torn off, it can grow back so they do not just have one claw. This is a structural adaptation and would be helpful if the crab got into a fight with another crab and got its claw torn off, then it can grow back.
Scientific Name: The scientific name for a Sea Hare is Aplysia dactylomela
Habitat: The Sea Hare is most commonly found in a seagrass ecosystem. The seagrass ecosystem is a perfect habitat for the Sea Hare as the grass is shelter, sources of food and protection from predators.
Diet: Sea Hares usually eat algae, meaning that they are a herbivorous animal.
- If threatened, Sea Hares realise a purple dye that works as a smoke screen, enabling them to escape from predators. This is a structural adaptation and would be helpful to them if they were being attacked by a predator and needed to escape.
- The Sea Hare is also not yet endangered because of over production. The Sea Hare lays over a thousand eggs knowing only a few would survive (the others being eaten by a predator). The few that survive contribute to the large population of Sea Hares. This is a behavioural adaptation.
Mangrove Ecosystem Food Web
- http://australianmuseum.net.au/semaphore-crab , date visited 10/9/16, last updated 5/1/10, writer unknown, photograph by Dr Isobel Bennet
I chose to research with this website because of the reliability of it. It is reliable because it is by the Australian Museum, which is a trustworthy and dynamic source because of its scientific information. I also used this website for the research of other organisms.
- http://www.bmrg.org.au/files/9914/0721/9486/MarvellousMangoveAustralia_2_MangrovesAsHabitat.pdf , "What eats what" page 6, date visited 10/9/16, author unknown
I chose this source because it was a very informative and very reliable source of research. This is because it explains thoroughly the different types of consumers and producers and where in the food web they belong.
- http://www.ssec.org.au/our_environment/our_bioregion/towra/about/problems.htm , date visited 9/9/16, last updated 7/2/14, author unknown
This website is very reliable and informs readers of the impact of humans on Botany Bay and the problems it is facing. The website is by an organisation, meaning it is trustworthy and true information.