This is a process by which ecosystem change over time. It is a product of complex interactions of biotic and a biotic factors. There is a gradual and continuous replacement of a dominant species until a relatively complex and stable ecosystem develops. The developmental stages are known as ere or several stages and final steady stage as a climax.
STAGES OF SUCCESSION
- Primary Succession: The first set of organisms to inhabit a bare plot of land or a newly form pool, pond or lake. They are the pioneer colonizers of such habitats.
- Secondary Succession: The more complex organisms that follow the pioneer colonizers after nutrients have been made available for them by the earlier succession. The producers first arrives and prepare a favorable condition of existence for the consumers to survive.
CHARACTERISTICS OF SUCCESSION
- Those species that are important in the pioneer stage are not likely to be important at climax.
- Biomas and the standing crop of organic matter decrease with succession.
- The diversity of species increases with succession.
- There is increase in net community production and a corresponding increase in community respiration during succession.
- Natural selection pressure on species in the community shifts dramatically as ecological development proceeds towards steady state.