Chapter 13: Principles of ecology study guide for test.

Abiotic
Nonliving factor in an ecosystem, such as moisture, temperature, wind, sunlight, soil, and minerals.

Autotrophs
Organism that obtains its energy from abiotic sources, such as sunlight or inorganic chemicals.

Biodiversity
Variety of life within an area.

Biogeochemical cycle
Movement of a chemical through the biological and geological, or living and nonliving, parts of an ecosystem.

Biomass
Total dry mass of all organisms in a given area.

Biome
Regional or global community of organisms characterized by the climate conditions and plant communities that thrive there.

Biotic
Living things, such as plants, animals, fungi, and bacteria.

Carnivores
Organism that obtains energy by eating only animals.

Chemosynthesis
Process by which ATP is synthesized by using chemicals as an energy source instead of light.

Community
Collection of all of the different populations that live in one area.

Consumers
Organism that obtains its energy and nutrients by eating other organisms.

Decomposers
Detritivore that breaks down organic matter into simpler compounds, returning nutrients back into an ecosystem.

Detritivores
Organism that eats dead organic matter.

Ecology
Study of the interactions among living things and their surroundings.

Ecosystem
Collection of organisms and nonliving things, such as climate, soil, water, and rocks, in an area.

Energy pyramid
Diagram that compares energy used by producers, primary consumers, and other tropic levels.

Food chain
Model that links organisms by their feeding relationships.

Food web
Model that shows the complex network of feeding relationships within an ecosystem.

Generalists
Species that does not rely on a single source of prey.

Herbivores
Organisms that eats only plants.

Heterotrophs
Organism that obtains its energy and nutrients by consuming other organisms.

Hydrologic cycle
Pathway of water from the atmosphere to earths surface, below ground, and back.

Keystone species
Organism that has unusually large effect on its ecosystem.

Nitrogen fixation
Process by which certain types of bacteria convert gaseous nitrogen into nitrogen compounds.

Omnivores
Organism that eats both plants and animals.

Producers
Organism that obtains its energy from abiotic sources, such as sunlight or inorganic chemicals.

Specialist
Consumer that eats only one type of organism.

Trophic levels
Level of nourishment in a food chain.

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