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Ecotone is
A. A zone between two ecosystems
B. An ecological study
C. Vertical zonation of an ecosystem
D. Horizontal zonation of an ecosystem

Last updated date: 13th Jun 2024
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Hint: Ecotone is an area where communities can meet and integrate. Their examples involve marshlands and estuaries. They are regions with higher biodiversity than a normal ecosystem and are the buffer zones for ecosystem protection.

Complete answer:
An ecotone refers to a transitional area or zone which is present between two different ecosystems or biomes like forests and grasslands. This term ecotone was derived from the combination of two words i.e. ecology plus tone. In landscape ecology, these ecotones are seen as the border areas, where two patches meet or integrate and interact having different ecological compositions.
Ecotone fundamentally contains elements that belong to both bordering communities as well as organisms that are characteristics and are restricted to the ecotone showing greater biodiversity. These ecotones can be seen as wide zones, where two communities gradually and slowly change from one to the other or also be present as a more abrupt boundary where the change from one association to another is abrupt and sharply defined.
There can be a local ecotone-like zone between a field and a forest or it may be regional for example such as the transition between a forest and a grassland ecosystem. Ecotones are sometimes associated with the ecoline as a physical transition zone between two ecosystems.

Hence, the correct answer is option (A).

Note: These ecotones are important as they form a bridge for the gene flow from one population to another because of the huge amount of genetic diversity. They are also served to be a sensitive indicator of climate change as the shifting of boundaries between ecosystems is believed to have a strong environmental cause.