Characteristics Of A Disturbance Event Or Regime Essay

1776 Words Sep 19th, 2016 8 Pages

Often times the term disturbance carries a negative connotation. However, ecologically speaking, disturbance is often positive, as it is a natural and vital process that facilitates the development of an ecosystem (Attiwill, 1994). It does so by causing a change in the structure of an ecosystem, resource availability, and/or the physical environment (Turner, 2010). Additionally, disturbance regimes focus on the temporal and spatial dynamics of disturbance on a longer time scale (Turner, 2010). The significance of a disturbance event or regime are dependent on three main properties: intensity, severity, and magnitude (Grayston, 2016a). There are several different types of disturbance such as fire, wind, and earthquakes. However, what type of disturbance is most prevalent in a certain area is mainly dependent on the climate of that area. For this, the Biogeoclimatic Ecosystem Classification (BEC) system is of particular use, as it groups together similar landscape segments or ecosystems, resulting in zones with a similar vegetation pattern, soil composition, and climate (Grayston, 2016a). The zones are commonly named after a predominant mature tree species in that area (Banner et al., 2014). There are over ten different BEC zones in British Columbia, but only three present in Haida Gwaii: the Coastal Western Hemlock (CWH) zone, the Mountain Hemlock (MH) zone, and the Coastal Mountain-heather Alpine (CMA) zone (Grayston, 2016a). Furthermore, these zones can be…

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