There is no secret that over the past few years, ecological issues have appeared on the agenda and have been staying there since. Indeed, in the light of the effect that people have on the Earth, its inhabitants and nature, it is especially important to learn about the fragile balance that lives and inanimate elements of nature must maintain.
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However, for a better understanding of the natural processes that keep the existing organisms and natural elements in their places, it is required to come up with a new concept of ecology. Along with the landscape ecology, the ecology of such an object as the Hudson River will help learn more about the role that the given object plays in the process of the American mainland shaping.
Before going any further with the development of a specific ecology, one must give credit to the existing landscape theory by giving it a proper definition and mentioning its key objectives, as well as its several specifics. According to the existing definition, landscape ecology is the field of science that researches the relationships between ecological processes and specific ecosystems (Swihart et al., 2006).
However, landscape ecology is rather broad field of science; embracing a lot of smaller ecosystems, it can be split into several separate types of ecology, including the ecology of specific types of soil, the species that inhabit specific types of landscape, as well as the elements of landscape, e.g., rivers, mountains, etc. Taking a closer look at the ecology of the American continent, one has to consider the ecology of some of the landscape elements leaves much to be desired.
Despite the recent attempts to restore the ecosystem of the Hudson River Basin in New York, there are sufficient reasons to suspect that the ecosystem of the river is on the verge of becoming endangered. In the light of the above-mentioned, the ecology of the Hudson River Basin needs a better introduction.
The given branch of ecology is going to handle various aspects of interactions among the species that inhabit the river, as well as the way the human activities influence the ecosystem of the river basin. The impact of technologies of the Hudson River Basin is going to be considered as well. In addition, the means to improve the way the humankind influences the living organisms are going to be considered in the ecology of the Hudson River Basin.
Despite the fact that in the ecology of Hudson River Basin, the impact of people on the river system is especially important, the relations of landscape ecology and the Hudson River basin are also essential. Among the issues that the realm of landscape ecology concerns, the effect of people’s activities on the landscape takes the first place. Changing the landscape, people shape its ecology to a considerable extent.
Likewise, people shape the ecology of the species that inhabit a specific landscape. Therefore, in the context of the North American landscape ecology, the ecology of Hudson River Basin gains a special significance. Since, due to the industrial waste and the wrong use of the river resources, the number and the variety of organisms in the Hudson River basin is rapidly decreasing, the ecosystem of the basin is in permanent danger.
Moreover, it is necessary to mention that, because of the irrigation problems and the pollution of water in the Hudson River Estuary, the Hudson River basin faces two threats, i.e., a contamination problem and the possible danger of drying the basin out becomes quite tangible.
In addition, the ecology of the Hudson River Basin can be considered on the premise of larger spatial scales. For example, taking into account that the Hudson River basin is only a part of the entire system of rivers in the United States, which, in its turn, stretches across the entire continent of North America to reach the Pacific and the Atlantic Oceans, and finally reaches the World Ocean, one must admit that the problem of the Hudson River contamination reaches the global level.
Therefore, the problem of the Hudson River Basin must be considered on a larger scale. Moreover, in the global context, not only the impact of the Hudson River Basin on other river systems but also the effect of other systems on the Hudson River Basin, should be researched.
It can be concluded that the ecology of the Hudson River Basin is more than merely an attempt to create a new branch of science. With the help of the given branch of ecology, one will be able to learn more about the American river system.
Since the resources of the Hudson Basin are used for a number of purposes such as agriculture (U. S. Department of the Interior & U.S. Geological Survey, 1992), their place in the food chain is rather high, which makes these predators rather important elements in the organic processes that take place on the continent rather significant.
Moreover, it is necessary to keep in mind that the Hudson River Basin links the Hudson River to a number of other rivers, such as Saw Mill River, Croton River, etc., which means that the problems within the basin will lead to the destruction of the rest of the rivers. Hence, learning more about the ecology of the Hudson River Basin is significant for learning the general ecology of the American rivers system.
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Swihart, R. K. et al., 2006. The roles of landscape context, niche breadth, and range boundaries in predicting species responses to habitat alteration. Diversity and Distributions 12, 277-287.
U. S. Department of the Interior & U.S. Geological Survey, 1992. Water quality in the Hudson River Basin. Web.