What are the Creepy “Dead Zones” of the Oceans?

In the past few years, the occurrence of ocean dead zones has increased considerably. The process, which to some extent occurs naturally, has in these past few years been hastened by excessive use of fertilisers and other products which are proving costly to the lives of the marine creatures.

To put it simply, ocean dead zones are those parts in the bottom of the ocean where there are no dissolved oxygen left for the marine creatures to live. In these past few years, however the number of ocean dead zones across the world has gone up and because of this, important and often much needed marine life is lost to the world.

Ocean Dead Zones

The process of the formation of ocean dead zones starts to occur when algae start to breed at the bottom of the ocean surface. Since algae uses oxygen to for its respiration, it ends up using most or all of the oxygen that is produced by phytoplankton and that required by water animals like clams, shrimps  and crabs and so on and so forth. The process of photosynthesis that is done by the phytoplankton to enable providing oxygen to the marine creatures ends up going as a help to the algae for their survival. These algae use the oxygen meant for the marine animals and multiply continuously leading to a widespread of dead ocean zones. Additionally, it has to be noted that the algae also prevent sunlight from reaching the bottom of the ocean floor thereby putting a stop in the process of photosynthesis as well.

Another major cause of the ocean dead zones is the dumping of the fertilisers and sewage into the seas. As much as the soil requires fertilisers, the nutrients that are present in them and which also get deposited in the ocean floor, are another main reason for the algae to mutate and cause trouble for the marine life. The use and the resultant misuse of the fertilisers occur in areas where the mouth of the river meets and confluences with the ocean. The sewage and the fertiliser waste enter the ocean and reach the bottom of the floor and algae, thus supplementing the entire process of ocean dead zones.

The Black Sea, the Mississippi River, the Yangtze River are some of the few areas where ocean dead zones have started to proliferate. In these areas, due to the above mentioned reasons the natural habitat of marine creatures breeding in these waters has started to get hampered. Of course, it has to be said that the creatures that get affected do look out for other areas in the ocean to breed and continue with their survival, the widening of the extent of the ocean dead zones has started to encroach upon the alternate survival areas as well.

For most of us, marine products are essential in our basic diet. This being the case, the widespread mutation of the unwanted algae is costing not just marine life but also human interests as well. Therefore it becomes very important that we start to look out for ways and means to stop the threatening of the lives of marine creatures by organisms like algae by finding out alternative sources for dumping sewage and fertilisers. Just as much as we depend on oxygen for our survival and agriculture for our food interest, marine animals too depend on oxygen present in the water for their survival. Therefore it would be completely wrong on our part to deprive them of their life, when we possess the ability to think of alternative helpful solutions to simplify and enhance our life.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.