biogeochemical cycle


There are many threats to the ecosystem of Denali National Park based on human activity impact. It varies from the impact of humans specifically or because of what humans do. The majority of the problems come from four sources; pollution, acidic precipitation, global warming and deforestation.

Pollution is a by-factor that is made from the oil companies and paper making companies nearby. They disrupt the areas around them by polluting the air and causing the muck to dirty the water and the permafrost. When the permafrost freezes and other animals use the water sources for protection and water, they will be affected. The animals will be affected by dying earlier or their offspring might have mutations. One form of pollutant (DDT) is now banned in the United States because the molecules break down slowly and accumulate in animal fat. As they pass through the food chain, it creates a biological magnification. One of the severe impacts that DDT has had was creating thin fragile eggshells of the offspring of peregrine falcons. There are serious consequences for all types of pollution. By polluting even a little bit of the ecosystem, it will eventually affect every organism because they have created an ecosystem that depends on each other.

Acidic precipitation will destroy life. Natural rainwater has a pH that is rarely lower than 5.6 but the rain and snow in northern United States has a pH 4.2 or below. Those lakes with the acid precipitations have less and less organisms that live in them. Acid precipitation is a result of sulfur introduced into the upper atmosphere combines with water vapors to produce sulfuric acid. It can damage the needles of spruce and pine trees and damage the roots of the trees indirectly by the soil.

Global Warming increases the temperature which melts the ice on lakes and forms rivers later which melts sooner and it causes problems. Human-related greenhouse gases are a major cause of the temperature increase. Global warming is increasing greatly and organisms cannot catch up to its pace. Sedentary species - plants and some invertebrates may not disperse rapidly enough to keep up with the changing temperatures. It fragments habitats so other animals cannot move in their isolated islands. These can make organisms change or die because of lack of adaption. The temperature can cause those organisms who reproduce at a certain time to reproduce earlier and become unbalanced with the rest of the ecosystem. Temperature-sensitive sex determination can be affected because the animals may begin to only have one type of sex, either female or male.

Deforestation or logging can affect this ecosystem because it is in the Taiga biome. The taiga is made up of coniferous trees and it takes a while to regrow these trees. Birds and insects that live in trees and depend on those resources may not have a home. Deforestation can cause loss of a variety of plant life.

Predictions of the future of Denali:
Denali is a national park that has many visitors and many staff members. Because of their keen understanding of what is going on in their ecosystem, the scientists and environmentalists of Denali will have efforts to stop many of the impacts that effect Denali negatively. They are doing that now because they will not allow their visitors to touch or interact with the wildlife. This park will not die nor will the animals become extinct. Those that work with extinct animals in the past like the American peregrine falcon, have gotten the bird off the endangered species list. There are many ways to stop the negative effects of Denali.