What Are the Plants and Animals in a Marine Biome?

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There are two types of aquatic biomes, also known as ecosystems. Freshwater biomes include rivers, streams and ponds; marine biomes are estuaries, shorelines, coral reefs and the ocean. Many types of animals and plants live in the marine ecosystem, including sharks, crabs, worms, seagrass, bulrush and alligator weed.

Ocean

  • A variety of fish live in the ocean, including tuna, swordfish and sharks. The largest animal is the giant blue whale, which can grow to 80 feet long. The dolphin is another mammal occupying the ocean. Deep in the ocean you can find some bizarre creatures, such as the viper fish and the deep sea dragonfish. The giant squid and sniper eel also live in the ocean. Plant life begins as the ocean meets the land, as it feeds off sunlight. There are a lot of algae in the ocean, but they are not considered plants.

Shoreline

  • The shoreline is where the ocean meets the land. There are many plants in these areas, such as bulrush, a grass-like plant that grows up to 10 feet. Alligator weeds, which grow on dry land or in water, produce 1/2-inch flowers. Sandworms live on the shoreline, as do limpets, snail-like creatures that scrape algae from rocks. Crabs are a common feature of shorelines. The smooth bay shrimp lives in shallow water with a sand base.

Estuaries

  • Estuaries are where the ocean mixes with the freshwater of rivers or streams. Sedge is a spiky grass-like plant that grows in estuaries. Eelgrass also resembles grass; it is submerged in water as too much sunlight harms it. Invertebrates like mussels, snails and lugworms live in this habitat.

Coral Reefs

  • Coral is often mistaken for a plant. Corals are animals with hard skeletons on the outside of soft bodies. Clams, sea horses, sea urchins and starfish are all inhabitants of coral reefs. Sea grass is a common plant in coral reefs; its leaves are narrow, long and green.

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