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Plants, animals, soils, water and more (components)

The various parts of an ecosystem are called components. Ecosystem components include the physical, chemical and biological parts that make up the environment. Examples include the water within a wetland, the chemicals within that water, the vegetation types at a wetland, animals and microbes that live in a wetland, the geology, terrain, soils or sediment of a wetland, or the wetland itself (adapted from[2][3][1]).

Understanding wetland ecology involves identifying the components of a wetland, and how these components function and interact, at the ecosystem scale, and within the context of the surrounding landscape or seascape. The interaction between the components and processes provides the ecosystem services that people value.

Nelumbo nucifera, Long Island Photo by Chris Small

wetlands are home to 130 species of freshwater fish, around 210 species of waterbirds and 3000 plant species.

Components in the landscape

To understand where components are in the landscape, components are organised into the following themes:

Use the search box below to explore the wetland components:

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  1. ^ The Ramsar Convention on Wetlands (Ramsar), (2005). 9th Meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Wetlands (Ramsar, Iran, 1971) – Wetlands and water: supporting life, sustaining livelihoods. Resolution IX.1 Annex A. - A Conceptual Framework for the wise use of wetlands and the maintenance of their ecological character. [online] Available at: [Accessed 14 September 2012].
  2. ^ Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (2005), Ecosystems and Human Well-being: Synthesis. [online], Island Press, Washington, DC.. Available at:
  3. ^ National Framework and Guidance for Describing the Ecological Character of Australia’s Ramsar Wetlands. Aquatic Ecosystems Toolkit Module 2: Interim Australian National Aquatic Ecosystem (ANAE) Classification Framework (2008). [online], Australian Government, Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts (DEWHA), Canberra, ACT. Available at:

Last updated: 6 October 2023

This page should be cited as:

Department of Environment, Science and Innovation, Queensland (2023) Plants, animals, soils, water and more (components), WetlandInfo website, accessed 18 March 2024. Available at:

Queensland Government
WetlandInfo   —   Department of Environment, Science and Innovation