What is an Ecosystem?
An ecosystem is made up of biological communities that co-exist together within a specific range of land. Ecosystems are composed of both biotic (living) and abiotic (non-living) factors that influence the sustainability, composition and functioning of the communities within the specific area.
(See more at the site where I found this table: http://www.globalchange.umich.edu/globalchange1/current/lectures/kling/ecosystem/ecosystem.html)
Types of Ecosystems
There are so many different types of ecosystems on our planet, from tiny-scaled ecosystems found in soil from the large-scale like a grassland or rainforest. Ecosystems can be found in ponds, lakes, trees, forests, rivers, oceans, mountains/cliffs, bogs, deserts, farmlands, cities, etc.
They are pretty much everywhere – but that does not mean that they are invincible! Ecosystems all over the world are threatened everyday by factors like human activities (littering, pollution, etc), Climate Change, etc.
Why are they important?
Generally, it is human nature to only be concerned with issues that directly affect us and the way we live! Ecosystems are a great example of how conservation directly affects are lives and benefits our future way of living, so that we can do the things we enjoy doing, the food we enjoy eating and the places we enjoy being at.
Ecosystems are essential to human life as they provide us with invaluable services known as Ecosystem Services.These Ecosystem services refer to food sources, water sources, carbon storage, fuels, suitable human habitats, land for farming, clean air and many more..
As well as essential resources, ecosystem services also provide us with, although not essential highly appreciated services like nice holiday destinations and economic values for our countries like trade & business, hobbies & lifestyle and ecotourism (Wild Atlantic Way).