Biotic interactions

What is a biotic interaction?

Biotic interaction refers to the relationships among organisms and occurs when organisms living in the same community directly or indirectly influence one another. Biotic interactions may occur within or among species and can also be positive and or negative, which come under the 3 specifications: mutualism, commensalism and parasitism.(Investigating Biotic Interactions in Deep Time, 2021). Mutualism is a symbiotic relationship, where all of the species involved benefits from the interactions e.g. The Bacteria and the human. Commensalism is a relationship between individuals of 2 species, in which one will collect food or other benefits from the other without causing any harm or benefits to the other species e.g. Sharks and Sucker Fish/Remora. Parasitism is when one individual benefits from the other individual, while causing harm to the host in the process.

The biotic interactions of a Monkey puzzle tree

The main biotic interaction of the monkey puzzle tree is the rate of seed predation . After the introduction Several types of none native species there was a large increase in seed predation which leaves the seeds damaged and non viable. A study was conducted and it showed at least 90 percent of the trees within this study where visited by a non native exotic mammal. Suggesting that exotic mammals may significantly reduce the population of native seed predators as well as regenerating monkey puzzle forests directly through the the reduction of seed availability and seedling survival.  (Applied plant ecology winter 2020)(2020).The number of seeds and seedlings dropped drastically when two and four exotic species visited. There is a direct biotic interaction through the reduced availability of seeds and a lower rate of seedling survival, this is a negative interactions as does not support the species in anyway. There are also indirect  biotic interactions through the distribution of dispersal processes.(Tella et al,2016)

The biotic interaction of the Blue whale

The biotic factors affecting the blue whale are sea animals aquatic plants , underwater fungi and bacteria. There are a few abiotic factors such as sea ice dynamics, sea surface temperature and bathymetry are key predictors of the distribution of plankton blooms which is the blue whales main source of nutrition and therefor when the distribution changes and the environment changes for the plankton there will be a reduction in the population. As this is an indirect biotic interaction as blue whales and plankton are ecologically linked there would in the long term be a reduction in the blue whale population.(Lee, 2016).Blue whales also play a vitals role in the ecosystem that keeps all creatures alive. Blue whales help provide at least half of the oxygen we breath, combat climate change and sustain fish stocks by providing nutrients to plankton. Phytoplankton are the main base of the marine ecosystem. They are vital to sustaining fish stocks. Phytoplankton also take in C02 (100 of thousands of tons every year) which intern helps to fight climate change. This is a biotic interaction from a whale as the whale provides the nutrients iron and phosphate. When the whale dedicates it fertilises microscopic plants called phytoplankton. Phytoplankton also absorbed C02 when a whale dies helping to balance the climate. WDC, N.D)

Reference list

The editors of encyclopaedia Britannica (2018). Monkey puzzle tree | Description and Facts. In: Encyclopaedia Britannica.

The Editors of Encyclopaedia Britannica (2019). Blue whale |facts, habitats and Pictures. In Encyclopaedia Britannica (online)

Investigating Biotic Interactions in deep time. (2021), trends in Ecology and evolution, (online) 36(1), pp.61-75. Doi:10.1016/j.tree.2020.09.001

Applied Plant Ecology Winter 2020. (2020). The Impacts of Exotic Mammals on The Monkey Puzzle tree

Tella, J.L., Lambertucci, S.AS., Speziale, K.L. And Hiraldo, F.(2016). Large-scale impacts of multiple co-occurring invaders on monkey puzzle forest regeneration, native seed predators and their ecological interactions. Global Ecology and conservation, 6, pp.1-15. Doi:10.1016/j.gecko.2016.01.001

Lee, J.F. Satellite tracking Antarctic minke whales(balenoptera Bonaerensis) in a dynamic sea ice habitat along the western antartic peninsula.

WDC (n.d.). The Green Whale. [online] Whale & Dolphin Conservation USA. Available at: