Ahh my first post of grade 9 it felt like a couple days ago I was writing my last one of grade 8. What you are about to read is about how we as humans are impacting our local ecosystems. But more specifically the driving question is “what are ways in which human beings impact our local ecosystems, and how can mitigate those impacts.”
The first thing we started learning about was ecosystems, a definition of an ecosystem could be an area where flora and fauna, animals, other organisms etc thrive together and form a bubble of life.
First Keystone! 🧱
Our first keystone was showing how ecosystems are all interconnected, and to do that we created a food web showing how an ecosystem is interdependent and interconnected. I chose to do the ecosystem of a kelp forest.
We also had to write a quick reflection relating to the question: “Consider your food web. What are ways in which human beings have impacted it? How does your food web illustrate the interconnectedness and interdependence of ecosystems?”
Here is what I wrote:
“My food web is an example of a kelp forest’s ecosystem. An ecosystem is a group of interconnected organisms, and there has to be a healthy balance of all the species involved otherwise the food web will be thrown off and will not function as it should. A major impact on the food web are humans. Humans are a major contributor to climate change; such as through pollution and development. As a result, Earth’s bodies of water are warming up and impacting how the organisms interact. For example, this causes sea-weed eating fish to become more aggressive and eat a lot of kelp. This affects the kelp forests because if there are more fish that eat them the kelp forests will slowly decrease and the ecosystem will be in danger.”
Then we moved on to learning about micro plastics (woop woop), we talked about different ways micro plastics can get into our water and effect our environment. One of the ways was by washing our own clothes! We did an experiment where we had a plastic bottle, marbles, soap, and a piece of fabric. Then we shook it up and filtered the water to see if we could find any micro plastics in the filter.
This is a micro plastic me and Sofia found!
About 700,000 micro plastics get released when a load of laundry is washed and that leads to Bioaccumulation.
We had to create a gif about bioaccumulation! I chose to create mine on an app called procreate. How I showed bioaccumulation was by showing a fish eating a phytoplankton with micro plastics in it then the fish getting hooked by a human who then eats the fish and consumes micro plastics. (Sadly I don’t have the eating part in my gif because I wasn’t able to create it).
Second Keystone 🧱
Our second keystone was a mock news report, the class got split into groups where we created a news report on a specific topic. I was put into a group with Evangline, Keaton, and Jackson. The topic we had to cover was the over population of sea urchins! Sadly on the day we had to film Jackson wasn’t at school so creating and editing the video was a bit rough (we didn’t get the amazing animated intro Evangline made into the video either) But, in the end we still finished and here it is:
The last thing we learned about before we created our final keystone was about the Carbon cycle, the nitrogen cycle and the phosphorus cycle! After learning more about the cycles I had to choose one to create a poster about. I chose to make a poster about the nitrogen cycle and here’s how it turned out.
Third Keystone! 🧱
The very last keystone we had to do was to create 5 fake social media posts about all of them assignments we did. Luckily we could work in pairs so Gwen and I worked together to create them!
The impacts we have on land and water can impact ecosystems a lot. Things like climate change, ocean acidification, eutrophication and over population are examples of things us humans have done. It will take a while to get all of the ecosystems to be thriving and healthy but some ways you can help the environment and ecosystems is by getting rid of your trash the correct way and making sure the products you use are safe and healthy for the environment. Avoiding single use items and reusing things can also help reduce waste!
Thank you for reading have a good day ❤️