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Territorial and natural complex. Natural complexes of Russia

It seems to many that nature is an unordered and somewhat chaotic phenomenon. Forests and copses, steppes and deserts are supposedly all disorderly located natural biotopes. This is far from the case.

All natural complexes in a given territory are always in a state of close interaction not only with each other, but also with other biotopes located in the neighborhood. It is this entire array of interactions and different biotopes (sometimes with absolutely opposite characteristics) called the natural complex.

The most global example of such interaction is the huge shell, which arose as a result of interaction of the lithosphere, hydrosphere, biosphere, and also the lower part of the atmosphere. Of course, its components are extremely heterogeneous, because they come into contact in very different conditions, which cause the formation of unique natural complexes.

Thus, the natural complex is a combination of climatic, biological and geological factors that contribute to the formation in a particular area of a particular biotope that is distinguished by a unique set of biological species. Contrary to common misconception, such complexes are not stable, can change relatively quickly, forming a completely different type of terrain.

Influence of environmental conditions

The climatic latitude greatly influences the formation of one or another natural biotope. Not surprisingly, at the same latitude, one can find the same natural complex, inhabited by different species, but possessing approximately the same characteristics. In the seas it is called natural-aquatic complexes. It should be noted that the process of their formation is very long, depends not only on the environmental conditions, but also on the species that the biotope inhabits.

Coral reefs are an excellent example. If there are polyps in the sea, then the bottom relief will be completely different from the characteristics of the neighboring region, where corals are for some reason absent. However, we do not forget about geological factors: the reefs could be formed only in those areas where more than 60 million years ago there were extinct volcanoes. By the way, this is proved by the famous Darwin, making a description of the natural complex of oceans and seas. Thus, we can draw a simple conclusion.

Any natural formation is constantly evolving, and the speed of this process is completely different. Somewhere millions of years are needed, whereas in other cases it takes quite a few months.

Main factors of development

The main factor that affects virtually any natural complex is solar radiation, the speed of rotation of the planet, as well as the totality of all processes taking place in the atmosphere, lithosphere, hydrosphere. Due to this, biotopes are extremely integral and dependent, but also on the vulnerable formations. If at least one element is violated, this will immediately affect the state of the entire complex. As a result, it either changes, or disappears altogether. This happened with swamps in Polesye.

A practical example of a biotope change

Historically, this area was formed in conditions of a large number of rivers, which were continuously fed with a lot of keys. In turn, the latter owed their existence to the enormous layers of clay, which did not allow deep drainage of groundwater. The increased humidity of the air contributed to the creation of a region with a special microclimate. The soil gradually became covered with thickets of bushes, moss and lichens.

Here a huge number of insects quickly appeared. In turn, they attracted amphibians, reptiles and birds.

What caused the destruction of the entire biotope? And just enough to break the water-resistant clay layer. Once it was crossed by an irrigation canal, the biotope began to change rapidly. The unique microclimate was violated, water-loving species began to mass extinctively. The marsh gave way to moderately dry meadows with acidic soil covered with stunted vegetation. Thus, the natural complex of the area was completely destroyed, but another formation immediately came to replace it.

Historical diversity of natural complexes

It should not be forgotten that thousands of types of natural complexes were formed and disappeared on the surface of our planet during the entire historical process. Seas and land repeatedly alternated, millions of species appeared and disappeared without a trace. Scientists believe that modern natural complexes began to form only 10-12 thousand years ago.

However, this is still quite "long" forecasts. Historians have long said that once Alexander the Great was able to go so far into Asia just because some two or three thousand years ago the Amudarya and the Syr Darya were much more full of rivers. Their ducts connected among themselves many parts of hard-to-reach mountainous terrain, where now it is possible to reach only by air or by land.

Rate of change in natural complexes

However, in some cases, biotopes have the property of changing literally before our eyes. Of course, this is not due to some natural natural factors (volcanic eruptions and other cataclysms do not happen so often), but under the influence of anthropogenic factors. Unfortunately, almost always unreasoned interference leads to very negative consequences.

The main components of the natural complex

Each natural complex is formed by peculiar "bricks", on the characteristics of which the properties of the entire biotope depend. First, the landscape. This word is understood to mean the same type of terrain, similar climatic conditions, combined with the features of the plant and animal world. The composition of the landscape itself includes terrain, tracts and facies.

Let's look at these components of the natural complex in a little more detail.

Characteristics of elements

A faciation is a biotope formed within a significant area of the terrain. An example is the bottom of a ravine, the slope of a mountain or its summit, the bank of a river or the sea. In this case endemic species are often formed, since the conditions of the facies are very homogeneous and quite constant.

If we talk about a group of interconnected facies, then this formation is called a tract. For example, the territorial-natural complex, which is located along the river bed - a tract. Of course, being numerous and constantly connected among themselves, they form terrains. These include the floodplain of a large and full-flowing river, interfluve, rocky highlands.

How are landscapes classified?

It should be noted that landscapes need to be classified according to their geological features. They depend on tectonic shifts and terrain. In particular, Russia's natural complexes include flat and mountain landscapes. There is also a class of lowland and elevated biotopes. A separate class is mountain-taiga landscapes, which are enough in our country.

Plain formations are divided into the following types: broad-leaved, mixed-larch, coniferous, forest-steppe and steppe. Separate formations are the banks of river floodplains, lakes, marshes. The main natural complexes of Russia are the plains covered with coniferous forests, forest-steppe, tundra and mountainous landscapes typical for the Caucasus.

How does human activity affect natural habitats?

We have repeatedly noted that human activities often lead to irreversible changes in the natural elements of the terrain. And in this case the characteristic of the natural complex changes significantly. And not only the relief, but also the climate, the characteristics of the soil, flora and fauna. Scientists distinguish purely agricultural, forestry, water management, as well as industrial and residential areas (cities, large settlements).

On the territory of our country, active human intervention began in the VI-V millennium BC. E. Thus, the forest-steppe and plains were largely formed due to the development of society, which began to consume more and more timber, actively cutting down forests. However, this process was particularly active in the 18-19th centuries. For example, the same Udmurtia until recently was known as a "volost covered with forests". During the Great Patriotic War, when the country needed a lot of coal, almost nothing remained of them.

In addition, the development of maritime trade marked the beginning of the mass development of coastal colonies, which quickly developed to the size of large city policies (in the case of the Greeks). From the 16th to 18th centuries. A massive process of transformation of forests into plains began. Since the 15th century, people have intensively mastered the steppes. All this was due to the fact that the population grew rapidly, people needed more food. Since the development of agriculture at that time was exceptionally extensive, it was necessary to plow more and more fields, letting timber under the ax.

Thus, virtually no territorial and natural complex has escaped change.

Until the 19th century, there were significantly more forests on the territory of our country that went to the needs of intensively developing industry. During the two World Wars, the speed of this process increased significantly. For the first time really industrial landscapes appeared, when in Kuzbass the intensive coal mining began, and in Baku - during the first oil wells.

The beginning of the 20th century in general was marked by an intensive transformation of landscapes to the needs of man. A huge number of roads were laid, metallurgy consumed more coal, forests and ore, and the increased demand for electricity required the construction of a large number of hydroelectric stations, which caused a large number of lowland biotopes to be flooded.


Thus, in today's European territory , industrial anthropogenic landscapes are largely dominated. In some areas, less than 20% of natural complexes remained that were not affected by human activities. Unfortunately, until now the protection of natural complexes is almost in its infancy. Recent years have shown a somewhat improving trend, but there are still not many in this direction.

How can a person conserve natural habitats?

Many believe that for this purpose it is necessary to create as many reserves as possible. Of course, to some extent this is correct, but it is necessary to think in more global ways. Remember that we talked about the interconnectedness of natural complexes?

If a large industrial enterprise is located near the protected area, then all measures for nature protection may be in vain. It is necessary to introduce resource-saving technologies everywhere , to conduct agriculture in accordance with modern methods, which require high yields from small areas. In this case, the person no longer needs to plow more and more land.

It is extremely necessary to reduce the amount of emissions into the atmosphere and the hydrosphere, since only in this case we will be able to conserve the biological diversity of rivers and oceans for our descendants.

However, one should not think that anthropogenic natural complexes are lifeless territories covered with pipes of factories. Nature demonstrates amazing flexibility, constantly adjusting to the changed parameters of the external environment.

So, many species have learned to live side by side with a person, using all the advantages of such interaction. Thus, ornithologists have long noted that in the suburbs of large megacities individual subspecies of tits have already begun to form, which even in the summer remain within the boundaries of the residential complex.

In short, the natural complex is a self-regulating array that can dynamically change.

How are biological species changing in anthropogenic biocenosis?

Usually these birds migrated to the cities only in the winter, when it became difficult to obtain the necessary amount of food in the forest. Today they live year-round in forest-park areas, without experiencing problems with food. As a result of food availability, the number of eggs laid is increased, as all chicks can be provided with food. Researchers believe that in a few decades the subspecies will be distinctly shaped, which will differ from the usual tits with larger sizes and less noticeable plumage.

That's how the changed natural complex affects animals. Examples can be given for a long time, but one of the best is rats. In urban conditions, they are much larger and more intelligent than their wild counterparts. They differ in increased multiplicity and more diverse color. The latter indicates a sharp reduction in the number of their natural enemies, since animals with "non-standard" appearance were able to survive and give offspring.

There are also completely inverse examples. In the Moscow Region, a large number of schools of feral dogs are currently observed. They are aggressive, completely not afraid of man. In the changed biotopes these animals occupied a natural niche of wolves. Researchers also believe that these groups of stray animals will eventually be able to stand out, forming a very special genotype.

As you can see, anthropogenic natural complexes, although they are artificially formed and supported by formations, live according to rather standard natural laws that allow preserving the biosphere.

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