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Example of Keystone Species

A keystone species is the core species in an environment. This will be a species which provides a lot of the biological and zoological processes of that environment, for example, a rodent species will typically be a keystone species, both as a forager affecting the environment and as a prey species. Keystone species typically create the environmental food chain, and in some cases controlling the ecology. A keystone plant species will create habitat, which underpins the functions of all other species in that environment.

Examples of Keystone Species:

Rabbits- foragers affecting plant growth, prey species for other animals and birds.
Grasses- major creators of plant habitats, they restrict the growth of other plants, and attract grazing animals and their related food chain.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Keystone_species
http://www.washington.edu/research/pathbreakers/1969g.html
http://darwin.eeb.uconn.edu/eeb310/lecture-notes/interactions/node2.html

Image Example of Keystone Species:

Sea otters, an example of a keystone species.

Puget Sound starfish.