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Ocean Subdivisions



Ocean Subdivisions
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   high interest, readability grades 5 to 7
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   4.99

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    bathyal, benthos, low-tide, nekton, neritic, lithosphere, microscopic, continental, abyssal, greatly, atmosphere, zone, affected, lies, seafood, meters


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Ocean Subdivisions
By Patti Hutchison
  

1     Giant clams, squid, jellyfish. The ocean is home to many interesting creatures. Imagine that the earth is a large city. The atmosphere, lithosphere, and hydrosphere are suburbs of the city. These suburbs are broken up into subdivisions. Different life forms live in these subdivisions.
 
2     Life in the ocean is affected by sunlight, temperature, and pressure. These factors vary greatly under the sea. The plants and animals in the ocean can be divided into three different groups. These categories depend on where they live and what their habits are.
 
3     The largest group is called plankton. These are very small organisms. Some are even microscopic. They float near the surface of the ocean where the most sunlight penetrates. They move with the drifting currents in the ocean. Diatoms and algae are examples of plankton. They are food for many larger animals such as whales.
 
4     Swimming organisms are called nekton. Fish, dolphins, and whales are examples of nekton. They can search for food independently. Nekton is found near the surface of the ocean and near the ocean floor. They can move from one area of the ocean to the other.
 
5     The third group of ocean life is called benthos. These plants or animals live on the ocean floor. They include barnacles, oysters, and starfish. Some, such as anemones, can attach themselves to the ocean floor. Barnacles even attach themselves to boats and other animals such as whales.

Paragraphs 6 to 13:
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