Ecosystem Function Paper
Within the ecosystem, there is a collection of biotic and abiotic components. Biotic components are of living things or things that once where alive. Abiotic components are non- living which are composed of soil, water, light, inorganic nutrients and weather. Located within Nevada, there are three major ecosystems; Sierra Nevada Mountains, which borders California and Nevada from the Mojave Desert to Oregon where climates can drop to as low as -50 degrees, the Humboldt-Toiyabe National Forest which is in Eastern Nevada and the Mojave Desert which is located in Southern Nevada, parts of Arizona, Utah, and California. This paper will discuss the functional and structural dynamics of an ecosystem in the Sierra Nevada Mountains.
Major Structural and Functional Dynamics
There are 172 mountain summits within Nevada. Temperatures can reach up 125 degrees during the summer months in Southern Nevada and get as low as -50 degrees in Northern Nevada. Within Nevada there are six biotic zones; Alpine, Sub-Alpine, Ponderosa Pine, Pinion-Juniper, Sagebrush, and Creosote bush. The average rainfall in Nevada is around 7 in with the wettest part of the state receiving around 40 in and the driest receiving less than 4 in ( Geography).
The Sierra Nevada Mountains is home to the Big Horn Sheep. The Sierra Nevada Mountains is also 60 percent of the water supply to California. During heavy winters when the snow melts, the snow fed streams supply irrigation water and generates hydroelectric power. Disease, hunting, and habitat encroachment has put the Bighorn Sheep on the endangered species list. Due to climate change, there are only five small areas left in the southern and central Sierra’s where the Bighorn live ( Sierra Club). With Sierra Nevada having the largest block of granite, its western slopes are glacier carved canyons which supports the diverse conifer forests and is the home of the Giant Sequoia. Due to high temperatures and climate...