Freshwater Lotic Ecosystems

Freshwater Lotic Ecosystems
Fish adapt to survive in flowing water
Animals help to stabilize water
level in bodies
Nourished by melting snow and rain
Low salt content
High oxygen content due to
flowing water
Can last for thousands of years
Running Water
Abiotic Factors
Low Salt Content
High Oxygen Content
Biotic Factors
Lotic ecosystems always flow in one direction. Usually they start in the mountains, formed by snowmelt and rain, and they flow downward over the
land. They typically last hundreds of thousands of years. Smaller ecosystems such as creeks may dry up each year as the seasons change. The types
of organisms that live in lotic ecosystems depend on many things. Such as how fast the water is flowing, the amount of light, and the temperature.
Organisms in lotic systems must be able to adapt to handle the high oxygen content, which is caused by the flowing water. Lotic systems have a
low salt content. Animals must be able to prevent excess water from building up in their bodies. Algae and plants provide energy for animals in lotic
ecosystems. Many invertebrates, such as insects, snails, and crayfish, depend on the flowing water to bring them oxygen and nutrients. Fish that
live in lotic ecosystems must be adapted to survive in flowing water. Many lotic systems connect to each other and form a path to the ocean, so
some fish species spend part of their lives in freshwater and part in the ocean. Other vertebrates spend part of the time on land and part in the
water, such as species of amphibians, reptiles, mammals, and birds. Specific examples include: frogs, salamanders, snakes, turtles, beavers, and
river otters.
Many types of animals live in creeks and it
varies widely by where the creek is. Mostly you
will find minnows, crawfish and tadpoles.
Animals that live in rivers include fish, some insect larvae and
reptiles, such as turtles. Mammals, such as river otters, beavers
and muskrats, also live in rivers, as do amphibians, such as frogs
and salamanders.