Resources for Marine Ecosystem

Marine Ecology Notes



Upwelling – Wind and ocean currents lift water from deeper ocean levels to top of surface bringing rich nutrients from below

Estuary – place where river and ocean meets; breeding ground for many saltwater animals; provides protection for young from predators; water is brackish

Brackish – a combined salt and fresh water mix that is adjusted by tidal flow (high tide – more saline; how tide – less saline)

Hydrothermal vents – underwater vents that release chemicals and heat at great depths under the ocean

Submersible – small under water vehicle that can be manned or unmanned to explore more closely life under the sea


General Notes:

  1.  Saltwater is more dense than freshwater; therefore, freshwater will float on top of the saltwater.
  2. Estuaries receive nutrients from both freshwater rivers and the ocean.
  3. Sonar is used to map the surface of the ocean floor by emitted sound waves that bounce off the ocean floor to determine the distance from the receiver.
  4. Upwelling carries nutrients to the surface of the ocean.
  5. Organisms that live in estuaries must be able to tolerate both fresh and salt water.
  6. Microorganisms make up most of the life in the oceans.
  7. Plankton is the major food source for saltwater organisms.
  8. The greatest number of organisms live closest to the surface of the ocean to be near major food resources.
  9. Approximately 75% of the Earth saltwater is contained in the oceans.

Carbon Cycle diagram link at


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