The Olympic rainforest reaches among lots of ecosystems from the top of its large mountains to old forests. It is in the state of washington in the pacific northwest. The rainforest is at almost 100,000 acres. Weather in the Olympic, is not easy to predict no matter what season it may be. Temperatures in the summer vary from 10-20 degrees along the coast line, mainly due from cool winds coming off the Pacifics waters. When a storm forms and starts to move across the rainforest, before it can fully get into the mainland, it faces a large obstacle, the Olympic mountains.
When a storm meets these mountains the only way to survive and progress and survive it releases moisture. When this moisture getting released it causes the western part of the Olympic gets much higher levels of precipitation; By the time any storm get past the mountains, if they do survive, most of the moisture that it contained before has already been released into the atmosphere. While precipitation still occurs, the amounts are way lower then they would be if the mountains were never there in the first place. The Olympic National Park is said to only recieve around 25 to 30 inches of rain a year. This decrease of rain impacts the type of ecosystems that are on the eastern side of the park. While the west region of the park contain rainforests, the east side much has much dryer forests.
The park basically has four regions, the alpine places and areas, the Pacific coastline, the rainforests in the west, and lastly the forests of the east, which are commonly more drier. Humans who visit the Olympic either camping or just hiking, lost of pollutants are released. Not only do they pollute the air, they also pollute water and sources of water. Runoff containing chemicals from humans, pump these waste materials and fertilizers into its lakes and rivers. Many other human made sources affect and pollute this rainforest. For example the nitrogen cycle is the cyclic use of nitrogen in an given environment. Abundant nitrogen is released when we use fertilizers, it is one of the key nutrients for plant growth.
When unabsorbed fertilizers are washed from the rain into the streams and rivers, higher amounts of nitrogen are caused, causing the growth rate of algae to increase. “The great amount of algae growth on the surface prevents sunlight from reaching the lower plants at the bottom, causing them to die, which overall reduces the dissolving oxygen concentration and reducing the available number of plants capable of producing nitrogen.” (Carson, Olympic Rainforest, Paragraph 5) In the Olympic, rainfall is very common, everyone knows that in any given water cycle, water evaporates into the atmosphere where it has has condensation and soon after returns to the earth’s surface as precipitation. Since the Olympic is next to the pacific, rainfall is even more common than say other rainforests. Water basically defines the Olympic National Park. in clouds, snow and rain is delivered, as frozen glaciers it sculps the peaks.
When snow melts, lots of it comes rushing down from the mountains, feeding lots of powerful rivers. These rivers then take this water to the Pacific and the cycle restarts. These streams and rivers around and in the Olympic are a life system that is circulatory, it is a main source that shapes the parks overall diversity. There are lots of different animals and plants that live in the olympic rainforest. At the top of this food web lies carnivores such as Vultures, Cougars, Bobcats etc.
These Carnivores eat animals such as deer, elk, and squirrels. Animals below these animals such as mice, insects etc, eat producers, which in this case are plants and grass. The African Savannah is very different from the Olympic. It is lower towards the equator, meaning that it is very hot and dry there.
Most of Africa is covered by Savannah grasslands, but the African Savannah it self is in the northern parts of Africa, taking up almost all of the upper region. Other Savannah’s are located throughout Africa, but none are as massive or diverse as the African Savannah. The African Savannah is a Tropical grassland, with warm temperatures almost all year, and lots of rainfall in the summer, which is its highest rainfall. The savannah is often told of by its small dispersed trees that are in, these tress allow sunlight to hit the ground, and grasslands. A community is a group of organisms interacting in a specific region under environmental conditions that are similar.
Healthy well balanced ecosystems usually have food chains that interact, commonly known as food webs. In the Savanna predators such as, Lions, Hyenas, and Leopards, feed on herbivores, such as cattle, warthogs and impalas. These herbivores feed on producers, who are commonly plants and grasses. Lastly, Scavengers, such as hyenas and vultures, feed on decomposers like bacteria, termites, and fungi, who break down organic matter, making it available for producers, completing the food web. Humans are also part of the Savannah’s community, and often compete with other organisms for space and food.
The nitrogen cycle in the Savannah is very similar to the Olympic. Nitrogen is picked up from plants in the soil, which in turn may be eaten by animals. When these animals die the nitrogen is released back into the atmosphere just like the Olympic. The water cycle in the Savannah is drastically different than the olympic. Since the African Savannah is near the equator its temps are often are hotter, meaning that the grass is not as lively and green as it would be in the Olympic. Heat from the sun causes water to evaporate and rise into the sky. But since rainfall isn’t as common, it doesn’t get released back into the earth’s surface as often.
This causes the savannah to be very dry, from the evaporation to the rainfall everything goes not as fast and slower, however other than the fact the water cycle is the same in the Savanna biome as everywhere else around the world. These two Ecosystems are drastically different, but in some way simular. The African Savannah is much more dry and scarce, while the Olympic has tons of resources and material for the animals to live and rely on. Carbon is more of a problem in the Savannah due to it not having as many tress and grass as the Olympic, though that does not mean it does not have any. The water cylce is the same way, the olympic rainforest hold the advantage because it has more rainfall and more life more the animals to rely/live on.