The ecological niche is a term that refers to a species or a group that lives within an ecosystem , before continuing it is necessary to clarify that this concept refers to something abstract , that is, it is not something that can be felt, it is not a place physical, it is more like the way an organism manages to live and how it behaves in the face of the available resources within a place, a niche of this type can be the functional or relational location of a species within a habitat .
The ecological niche is a term that began to be used in 1950 and as we said it is something that cannot be seen, it also implies other factors such as temperature and other environmental conditions that make a species or a group of species able to develop and maintain its population correctly, there is also what is called “disappeared ecological niche” which occurs when the niche in question is left free so that animalsor organisms of other species come to occupy it and it can occur for example when a species becomes extinct, it can also occur when animals or plants pass to occupy an environment voluntarily because they have what is necessary to maintain a population within said habitat but for this they kill the species that were already before them, this is common when an exotic species is introduced into a different ecosystem.
There are two types of ecological niches: the fundamental niche or potential ecological niche which is based on the potential that the species has to feed and survive regardless of its interaction with other species, the second is the effective niche or real ecological niche which it is the set of conditions and resources that make it viable for a species to survive within a place which includes other species and predators.
Examples of ecological niche:
- The niche occupied by a group of giraffes in Africa.
- A group of piranhas in a river.
- The niche occupied by lions and zebras.
- Sea lions and guano birds on an island near the coast.
- A swarm of bees building a panel in a tree.