Answer to Question #199391 in Ecology for Nana Kwame

Question #199391

Discuss aquatic,terrestrial and aborreal habitat in relation with adaptation and survival of organisms with these habitats

Expert's answer

A habitat is a place in which living organisms live. There are various habitats in nature which include aquatic habitat, terrestrial habitat, and arboreal habitat. Aquatic habitat is an area that is permanently covered with water. Also, the surrounding areas of aquatic habitat are surrounded by water (Hartel et al., 2007). Animals living in aquatic habitat has specific structural modifications in their body parts that enable them to survive and adapt to this environment. For instance, the fish has a streamlined body that helps them to swim easily. The majority of aquatic animals have fins as the locomotion organs.

On the other hand, terrestrial habitat is an area or habitat found on land, like forests, grasslands, deserts, wetlands, and shorelines. It also includes the habitat made by man, like farms and habitats under the earth's crust, such as caves and mines. Plants that grow in these habitats are known as terrestrial plants, and they are classified into two categories; mesophytes and xerophytes. Mesophytes such as wheat and mango are terrestrial plants that grow on average and moisture temperature. These plants have a well-developed root system to increase water and mineral absorption. In addition, these plants are not surrounded by water at all times like the hydrophytes plants (Running & Mills, 2009). As a result, they are not capable of absorbing water and nutrients directly from their habitat. This is why they have a developed vascular system and xylem that plays a critical role as vascular sclerenchyma with thick secondary cell walls that help in the water conversation mechanism. Xerophytes such as cactus and opuntia are plants that manage to grow in dry and hot habitats. These plants have small leaves that help in reducing the loss of water through transpiration. The stems of xerophytes such as cactus consist of a flattened, fleshly, thick, and green stem that enhances water storage. Terrestrial animals such as cursorial animals (lion and deer) consist of a streamlined body for swift movement. Fossorial animals (rabbits and rats) living in terrestrial habitats have a small head, and an anteriorly taper to form snout for digging.

Finally, arboreal habitat is a home or place or animals living in the trees, and it can vary from cecropia trees to in tropical forest to white spruce of the arctic. Mammals such as sloths living in this habitat have a special stomach that helps them obtain beneficial nutrients from tree leaves (Dang et al., 2018). Also, sloths have curved claws that help them in gripping tree branches. Marsupial koalas that survive off the eucalyptus tree consist of special paws and claws that help them climb and jump from one eucalyptus tree to the other.


Dang, N. X., Wang, J. S., Liang, J., Jiang, D. C., Liu, J., Wang, L., & Li, J. T. (2018). The specialization of the third metacarpal and hand in arboreal frogs: Adaptation for arboreal habitat?. Acta Zoologica, 99(2), 115-125.

Hartel, T., Nemes, S., Cogălniceanu, D., Öllerer, K., Schweiger, O., Moga, C. I., & Demeter, L. (2007). The effect of fish and aquatic habitat complexity on amphibians. Hydrobiologia, 583(1), 173-182.

Running, S. W., & Mills, L. S. (2009). Terrestrial ecosystem adaptation.

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