Outline factors that affect numbers in predator and prey populations in the rocky shore ecosystem, give example.
Any ecosystems existing on earth have several factors that affect the existence of organisms living on it. A rocky shore consists of salty water, different sizes of rocks, pebbles and sand. Organisms in this place have adapted certain mechanisms that will make them thrive in this area.
For rocky shore ecosystem, the factors that affect the number predator and prey populations can be summarized as follows:
1. Waves are unpredictable therefore it can drive away the populations when the waves are high and strong.
2. Rocks can be moved by waves and therefore can affect the organisms living in the area. Rocks can provide shelter to certain animals such as crustaceans and shellfishes.
3. Sea level - When the sea level is high, there are more small fishes on the shore. This would attract birds that will eat them. On the other hand, when the tide is low, it would be easy to capture shellfishes and crustaceans.
4. Salt concentration - generally the upper shoreline contains less number of species compared to the lower shoreline. It is because of varying salt environments on the upper shoreline. During hot days, water evaporates thus making the shore more concentrated. However, when rain comes, it dilutes the shore.