Impact of Biotic Community Alteration by Humans


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Biotic communities are composed of living things both flora and fauna living together through development of various interactions which engage feeding. There are several other relationships in biotic communities which have a great impact in the dynamism of the communities such as the alteration of the natural occurrence by man. This has been a serious issue as more biotic communities have disappeared courtesy of mans invasion thus disturbing the balance which was initially present in the biotic community. This issue has an economic basis in that no profits are gained from a non-productive biotic community. However, despite the many negative effects of the human alteration, there are several solutions for the issue such that the effects can be minimized.


The issue

Biotic communities are organizations of living things living together in the same habitat. Most of the biotic communities are present in the natural ecosystems such that interference by man distorts the normal natural process of the living components of the biotic community. Human beings have being detrimental in altering the natural composition of the biotic communities especially the small communities through the destructive activities such as exploration. For any biotic community to exists and survive the various external and internal forces which may be threatening its existence, the participants of the community have to co-exist in their habitat (Ricklefs, 2005).

Similarly, the biotic systems as initially self-sustaining are capable of supporting life for all participants and members. Therefore, the impact of human beings on the biotic community disrupts the ability of the community to sustain life of the inhabitants due to pressure emanating from human activities (Ricklefs, 2005).

Reasons for concern

The biotic community has various characteristics which are also advantages as the benefits which the members derive from the community are as a result of the characteristics. All biotic communities often occupy areas which are defined as their habitats such that the flora and fauna making up a biotic community can only be found in the designated place. Similarly, the aggregation of the participants in the same geographical or physical environment gives the definition of a community a clear definition.

The habitat has its own regulating factors such that at no one time will the population exceed the supply of resources as the limiting factors control the number of living organisms. With the alteration by human beings, the habitat is more likely to be faced by several problems such as accumulation of toxic materials as well as reduced impact of the natural process which regulate the seize of the community. Similarly, destruction of the biotic community is very much likely (Ricklefs, 2005).

The other reason for concern on the issue is the aspect of species diversity and speciation such that the biotic community provides adequate resources for the creation of new species. This is made even easier by the ability of the community to regulate its population such that the fittest are selected to survive. Alteration by human beings results in fewer avenues in which the phenotypes of the living organisms can change for the better hence increase adaptability to the prevailing conditions. Biotic communities which have been altered by human beings to include artificial resources or where man takes up the effort to provide resources such as food, disrupts the naturally occurring speciation process.

This is because in altered communities, there are fewer struggling opportunities as man will tend to provide food and carry out all the regulatory activities thus reducing the self-sustaining trait of biotic communities (Ricklefs, 2005).The consequences of low speciation rates in any biotic community leads to extinction as some of the plant and animal species will end up in the endangered species list due to poaching, as well as, death due to altered environments. Therefore, to maintain the natural biotic communitys mans alterations have to be reduced (Ricklefs, 2005).

Basis of the issue

The impact of altering the biotic communities by man has an economic basis as the greed for more sources of income has made man to interfere with nature hence modifying it to meet his needs. This has been the basis behind development of zoos, animal orphanages and artificial parks. The marine environment has also been altered by man to increase the overall economic footage by introducing artificial aspects which distort the natural process (Ricklefs, 2005).

Proposed solutions in fixing the issue

The government should formulate laws which attempt to reduce human interference on the natural biotic systems such that heavy penalties should be extended to those found guilty. Similarly, ecologists should develop educative awareness programs aimed at reducing human alterations after making it public that the alterations have severe negative impacts of the biotic communities (Ricklefs, 2005).Personally I support the awareness programs as it will assist the entire human race to reduce the destructive alterations of biotic communities which have all along existed naturally.


In conclusion, all man made problems are often solved through man made solutions. Hence the issue of impact of biotic community alteration by humans which is a man made problem can only be eliminated by including human beings in the solution programs.


Ricklefs, R.E. (2005) The Economy of Nature, 6th ed. WH Freeman, USA

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