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Activity Discussion Environment Planktons

  • Dikshu

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    February 21, 2024 at 5:13 pm
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    Plankton refers to a diverse group of organisms that live in bodies of water, including oceans, seas, and freshwater habitats. Plankton are characterized by their small size and their inability to swim against the currents effectively. They serve as the foundation of the aquatic food chain, providing sustenance for many other organisms.

    Plankton can be broadly classified into two main groups based on their size: phytoplankton and zooplankton.

    1. Phytoplankton: These are microscopic, photosynthetic organisms, primarily consisting of algae and cyanobacteria. They obtain energy through photosynthesis, using sunlight and nutrients like carbon dioxide and various minerals. Phytoplankton are responsible for a significant portion of the Earth’s oxygen production and are crucial for maintaining the balance of marine ecosystems.

    2. Zooplankton: Zooplankton are heterotrophic organisms that feed on other plankton, including phytoplankton. They include a wide range of small animals, such as tiny crustaceans (e.g., copepods and krill), larval forms of larger organisms, jellyfish, and small fish. Zooplankton serve as a critical link between primary producers (like phytoplankton) and higher trophic levels in the food chain, as they are consumed by larger organisms.

    Plankton play a vital role in regulating the Earth’s climate, nutrient cycling, and carbon sequestration. They also serve as indicators of environmental health and are studied extensively in marine biology and ecological research.

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