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349  MBCB  Challenge Questions  Chapter 6   Intertidal Ecology

Research the following questions and thoroughly answer them in complete sentences.


1.                  Why is the intertidal zone the most well-known marine habitat?  How is it important to the environment movement?  Discuss.

2.                  How can storms influence the distribution of organisms in the sandy intertidal zone?  Discuss.

3.                  Why are there so few terrestrial organisms that exploit the marine intertidal habitat?

4.                  How can air temperature and the tidal cycle team up to influence drastically organisms living in the intertidal?

5.                  What physical factors are important in producing zonation of intertidal organisms?

6.                  What biological factors are important in producing zonation of intertidal organisms?

7.                  Discuss UV light limits organisms on the intertidal shore.

8.                  How do larvae help create the community structure of the rocky intertidal zone?

9.                  How do tide pools vary in their salinity, temperature, and oxygen concentration as a function of time and tidal cycle

10.              How are wave action, particle size, and water retention related?  How does particle sorting take place?

11.              What adaptive features help keep the sandy beach infauna in the sand?

12.              What problems does sand/mud offer the infauna?

13.              Are carnivores a rare in mud flat habitats?  Discuss.

14.              What sorts of zonation patterns do intertidal beaches display?

15.              What is the dominant feeding types ( s ) of the infauna in mud flats?  To what phyla do these organisms belong?

16.              How will the oxygen concentration in a mud flat influence the vertical distribution of organisms in the mud:  bacteria, algae, protozoans, various worms, clams, and snails?

17.              Why do macroalgae grow well on mud flats, but do not on the sand beaches?

18.              What adaptations allow organisms to survive on an exposed rocky shore?  Discuss and give examples to support your ideas.

19.              What important differences are there between rocky shores of the Atlantic and Pacific?