Barnacles Observation Essay

1032 Words 4 Pages
Observations
The several ecological factors discussed in the introduction were contrasted with the study site. The first site was analysed during high tide. Several aerate rocks occupied the rocky shore of the particular site. No presence of barnacles was noted.
There were several favourable abiotic and biotic factors within this microhabitat. These included tidal action, salinity, availability of nutrients and lack of diversity within the competition of space and lack of predators.
Despite these favourable characteristics, certain limiting factors prevented the organisms from inhabiting the site. Perhaps the most crucial limiting factor was the substrate. Since barnacles secrete an adhesive onto solid rock to withstand high velocity waves and remain sessile, a porous substrate disabled the organism to effectively attach itself to its substrate.
Another factor was the competition density that certain organisms posed. Periwinkles dominated the region increasing interspecific competition within the microhabitat.
Since the site was studied during high tide and was barely submerged, it indicated that perhaps the area was in the subtidal zone. Due to the barnacles’ constant need of submersion, this
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Competition from both sandy and rocky ecosystems affect the niche of barnacles. Therefore, the barnacles observed within this site were very small along with visible competition around them. Populations were also very scarce and spaced out due to heavy competition and lack of suitable substrate. Tidal action was also limited due to the height of the rocks and the water levels exposed to the shores. The slope was also at a disadvantage due to the height of the rocks. Lesser level of water indicates lesser levels of nutrients thus the smaller barnacles. This study site provided an effective of a realised niche due to several biotic and abiotic

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