Aquatic Life Zones - Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools

Aquatic Life Zones: 2 major categories 1. Marine (saltwater) Or 2. Freshwater

Types of organisms

determined by: Salinity Temperature Sunlight availability D.O. (dissolved oxygen) Nutrient availability

Major types of Organisms Plankton: small free-floating organisms Phytoplankton: plant-like Photosynthetic

diatoms, protists, etc - Zooplankton: animal-like

Heterotrophic Protozoans Larvae Copopods, cnidarians, krilletc.

- Ultraplankton: TINY (less than 2 micrometers) includes bacteria Benthos (benthic organisms): bottom dwellers anchor to one spot, burrow, or

walk along bottom Nekton: active swimmers dont follow currents Baleen whales: filter feeders

Plates (baleen) hang from upper jaw filter plankton from water includes: humpbacks and blue whales Toothed whales: teeth used to bite and chew food

includes:orca (killer whale) and sperm whale Marine Lifezone: Subcategories: * Coastal * Open Ocean (Sea)

euphotic zone bathyal zone abyssal zone Subcategory: Coastal

High tide to Continental shelf (Ample sunlight) high NPP 90% of all marine species

1. Coral reefs: MOST biodiverse areas of all aquatic life zones The Aquatic Rainforest Hundreds of thousands of coral polyps excrete CaCO3 skeletons

Grow slowly, disrupted easily: Biggest threat: sediment run-off Bleaching (even from 1 degree temp increase)

Removal (aquariums/jewelry) Pollution Damage (tourists, anchors, natural disasters) Overfishing

Cyanide/dynamite fishing 1 m2 of reef killed for every fish caught 2. Intertidal zone: shoreline between low and high tide Tides caused by gravitational pull of moon

Organisms adapted to HARSH conditions 3. Barrier Islands: islands separated from the mainland by a shallow sound, bay, or lagoon

Constantly shifting beaches due to erosion Can be helped with a jetty Dunes backbone that provides stability Plants hold sand in place

Protect from natural disasters 4. Coastal wetlands: inlets, bays, sounds, Mangrove forest swamps 5. Estuary: where freshwater meets

saltwater (mouth of a river) Marine Lifezone: Subcategories: * Coastal * Open Ocean (Sea)

euphotic zone bathyal zone abyssal zone Subcategory: Open Ocean 1. Euphotic zone: top

Sunlight layer: phtyoplankton = photosynthesis: HIGH D.O. (dissolved oxygen) and low dissolved CO2, big fish and mammals

2. Bathyal zone: middle Dimly lit little/no producers, zooplankton, smaller fish 3. Abyssal zone: bottom Dark, cold, little D.O., nutrients on floor Chemosynthetic bacteria at hydrothermal


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