found in the oceans. Like bacteria on land, marine bacteria can be found everywhere and can survive in all sorts of hostile environments. Bacteria play a vital role in the decomposition of matter, as it gets to work straight away when plants or animals die.
Overall, the main decomposer organisms in marine ecosystems are bacteria. Other important decomposers are fungi, marine worms, echinoderms, crustaceans and mollusks. In the colder ocean waters, only bacteria and fungi do the decomposing because the other creatures cannot survive in the extreme conditions.
They include fungi along with invertebrate organisms sometimes called detritivores, which include earthworms, termites, and millipedes. Fungi are important decomposers, especially in forests. Some kinds of fungi, such as mushrooms, look like plants.
Decomposition begins at the moment of death, caused by two factors: 1.) autolysis, the breaking down of tissues by the body's own internal chemicals and enzymes, and 2.) putrefaction, the breakdown of tissues by bacteria.
Saprophytes are decay organisms and are responsible for getting dead animals and plants to rot (decompose). They break down the remains into simple chemicals e.g., nitrates which contain nitrogen, an important element needed by plants.
Most species of starfish are generalist predators, eating microalgae, sponges, bivalves, snails and other small animals. Some species are detritivores, eating decomposing organic material and fecal matter. Starfish occupy several significant ecological roles.
These can include lobsters, shrimp, clams, mussels. Like the echinoderms, crustaceans and molluscs are also known as macro decomposers. They feed on decaying matter to help add nutrients to the ocean ecosystem.
In addition, research has found that large marine animals such as whales and sharks sequester comparatively large amounts of carbon in their bodies. When they die naturally, they sink to the seafloor, where they are eaten by scavengers.
The typical decomposition changes proceed more slowly in the water, primarily due to cooler temperatures and the anaerobic environment. However, once a body is removed from the water, putrefaction will likely be accelerated.
Fossil records suggest that at one point in history, there were more than 3,000 types of sharks and their relatives. Sharks managed to survive during extinction events when the ocean lost its oxygen – including the die off during the Cretaceous period, when many other large species were wiped out.
Made of very strong and thick bone, dolphin snouts are biological battering rams. Dolphins will position themselves several yards under a shark and burst upwards jabbing their snout into the soft underbelly of the shark causing serious internal injuries.
In many cases, the white tissue decay is seen on the central body of the starfish, but in advanced cases, it spreads to the arms, which may break off. Over a few days, the starfish's body breaks down and appears to have melted on the seafloor before it is washed away.
A disease that causes starfish to disintegrate has been reported in the UK and Europe for the first time. Sea star wasting disease is a poorly understood condition that has killed millions of starfish in the USA; the causes of which may be linked to climate change.
The most abundant type of chemical decomposer in a compost pile is aerobic bacteria. When they break down organic material, they give off heat. Billions of aerobic bacteria working to decompose the organic matter in a compost pile causes the pile to warm up.
But don't abstain from peeing in the ocean because you think it attracts sharks. That's simply not true. We understand where the myth comes from. Sharks are legendary for their superior sense of smell.
Any bodily fluid released into the water is likely detectable by sharks. A shark's sense of smell is powerful – it allows them to find prey from hundreds of yards away. Menstrual blood in the water could be detected by a shark, just like any urine or other bodily fluids.
As the shark swims around you, keep your head on a swivel and try to maintain eye contact. “Sharks are ambush predators,” Peirce explained. “If you're turning around and facing it the whole time while it circles you, it's not going to be half as comfortable as if it's able to sneak up from behind.”