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Biological & Biomedical Sciences
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A Result Of Natural Causes: Does Salinity Affect Aquatic Life? (Essay Sample)

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AN ESSAY ON SALINITY AND AQUATIC LIFE

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Student Name Professor’s Name Course Date Salinity and Aquatic Life Most aquatic organisms exist in conditions that have a high concentration of salt. There are, however, those that prevail in freshwater bodies. Most aquatic bodies are salty in nature and seem to support aquatic life. These situation further raises concerns, with many seeking to understand the rationale behind this notion. Different organisms are equipped with various features that enhance their survival in saline environments. However, there are notable differences between the organisms in these environments and those found in freshwater environments. Such include their growth rate and their concentration rates. It, therefore, begs to find the reason behind the survival trends observed in aquatic life and seek an understanding of whether salinity affects aquatic life. Salinity in water bodies can be a result of natural causes, for instance in situations where water bodies, containing the different components of salt, mix. According to Cañedo-Argüelles (157), this is common where the fresh water from rivers and estuaries mix with the oceans. Since the ocean has a high concentration of salt, they tend to overwhelm other bodies thereby increasing their concentration. Additionally, there are the non-natural causes that result to an increase in the salinity levels of water bodies. For instance, climate change resulting from the effects of global warming causes the bodies to have an increase in their salt concentration. This is because the water evaporates at a high rate thus increasing the ration of the concentration of salt in the water bodies. Reduction in the level of water bodies also results to this phenomenon. Living organisms in the water bodies can cope with the situation of salinity through their features. For instance, there are those that adjust their tissues’ amino acids to cope with the concentration of the water. This is through osmoregulation, where they use features such as kidneys, gills, and the salt glands. Osmoregulation helps keep the organism at an optimal state when in both environments (Solórzano 35). Consequently, organisms can keep their osmotic pressure unchanged regardless of the salt concentration. They develop coping mechanisms such as ions absorption techniques to cope with the situation. For instance, the plant uses their features of roots, plants, and leaves to get rid of the excess water and ions, thus contributing to their survival in these environments (Gul, Bilquees 8). The fish and other invertebrates in existence use their kidneys, salt glands, and gills to balance their metabolism and survive in the ecosystems. Does salinity affect aquatic life? Every aquatic organism, flora, and fauna, has efficiently adapted to the ecosystem. They have their mechanisms and structures that contribute to their success in the ecosystem. Regardless of the fact that these organisms require fresh water, free of impurities, to survive, there are those that still survive under saline conditions (Solórzano 35). The salinity of the water bodies seems to increase with depth, and that is the location of the various aquatic organisms. Hence, there is need to understand the traits that make these organisms survive in such environments. Some species, living in water bodies, have defined their means of survive. For instance, some types of fish can accumulate optimal ranges for salt in their systems, while others adopt a transition system (Hauton 10). The transition system s one where they move to the different locations, in the ecosystem, depending on the level of salt in existence. Some species are also seen to swim into freshwater bodies, in the escape of the harsh living condition, they are exposed to in these salty water bodies. After spawning, they head back to their natural habitats, where the cycle continues in the instance that the conditions become hard for them to condone. Organisms living in saline water bodies have a slow rate of growth. The environmental conditions under this environment are not conducive to help the organisms grow to their optimum levels (Smyth 161). When compared to those living in freshwater bodies, the salty water aquatic animals tend to have stunted growth. The salt in the water causes a defect in them as it lacks the appropriate minerals to foster growth. Thus, the fish and lands found in these bodies have different traits from those found in other water bodies. Further, Smyth presents that some even differ in shape and size due to the difference in the growth factors fostering their development (163). A balanced environment, one that consists of both salinity and fresh conditions, fosters their growth. Salinity in water bodies has an adverse effect on the distribution of the organisms in the environment. According to Hauton (11), the conditions in these environments provide a hindrance to proper and adequate growth in the organisms. Flora and fauna in these areas are compelled to adapt to the various survival tactics, a factor that contributes to distribution disparities (Ma 1679). This provides a rationale to the observations regarding their concentration in particular parts and the differences in the concentration. Organisms that fail to adopt these mechanisms may die. Thus, the reason behind the observation where these organisms are found in one place, in high numbers, and not in others. High salinity levels have an adverse effect on the aquatic animals. The high concentration of salt subjects the components of marine life to a life full of struggle and adaptation to succeed. Although these organisms have a way of coping with the salinity of the water bodies, they still struggle with finding the necessary nutrients to survive. The environment is characterized by a high concentration of the oxides and ions, which causes are not contributory factors for growth. Therefore, the organisms in the aquatic environment strive for survival daily. In as much as the saline water causes an effect in these bodies, there are some notable benefits observed to the organisms living in these conditions. Most studies have deduced the importance of salt in living organisms in the marine ecosystem (Solórzano 32). Most organisms require a certain percentage of salt concentration in the water, to work well with their metabolism. Fish have a semi-permeable membrane that contributes to their ability to survive in these environments. If they are exposed to purely fresh water, their systems will face a challenge to maintaining a balance. A similar situation is observed if they are in a purely saline environment, and this could result in fatal results. Thus, they require a balanced ecosystem to develop and grow effectively (Smyth 174). For the flora in the ecosystem, the situat...
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