An estuary is the point where a big river enters the ocean. This habitat is created by the mixing of fresh water and salt water because of tidal action. Here, salt water from the ocean mixes with fresh water from the river to form an intermediate water known as brackish water. The salinity of ocean flunctuates with distance from the dry and rainy season.
Characteristics of Estuarine
- The water is brackish that is the salinity is intermediate between freshwater and salt water.
- The volume of water rises with high tide and falls with low tide
- The habitat is flooded and exposed as the tide rises and fall
- The bottom is made up of soft mud
- There fluctuation in salinity and temperature
- It has rich and highly productive soil owning to the high deposit of alluvial soils
- There is usually no wave action
Adaptive features of estuarine water plant and animals
- Animals have body fluids of equal concentration as that of the surrounding water, making them to tolerate change in salinity
- Some of the animals have adaptive features that aid in attaching firmly to rocks, while some hide in rocks, crevices to protect themselves against wave action.
- Plants that grow in estuarine are red mangrove, white mangrove and raffia palm
- Animal found in the mangrove swamp include fishes, mud skipper, barnacles and oysters
- Plants and detritus as primary producer that sustains other life forms in the habitat spearhead
- the food chain in estuarine habitat.
Detritus Shrimp Fish Bird
Animals such as shrimps, crabs and snails are eaten by higher members especially fish and birds.
Types of Estuarine
- Tidal marsh or embayment
- River mouth
QUESTIONS (POST YOUR ANSWERS USING THE COMMENT BOX FOR EVALUATION AND DISCUSSION).
1.An aquatic habitat that is not moving is A. lotic B.lentic C.bentic D.netic
2.Epiphytes are usually found in ……………….. habitat
- desert B. forest C.marshland D. grassland.
3.The driest habitat is A. desert B.fotest C. savannah D. swamp
4.The largest and deepest aquatic habitat among the following is A . oceans B.seas C.lake D. river
5.Which of the following is a xeromorphic plant? A.cactus B.watre leaf C.water lily D.balsam plant
- What is marine habitat?
7.Mention any four aquatic habitat
b.Outline the characteristics of marine habitat and discuss any four of them.