Ecology exam 1 study guide

The study of interactions between organisms and their environment

Organisms responding to interactions in their environment

Study of interactions between an individual and it’s environment

All the individuals of the same species living in the same place at the same time

Population ecology
Study of environmental factors that affect population growth , stability or decline

All individuals of all species living in one place at the same time

Community ecology
Study of how different species affect each other in a community

All the interacting organisms living in an area and their physical environment

Ecosystem ecology
Study of how organisms affect and are affected by their physical environment

Physiological ecology
Study of physiological responses of organisms to environmental factors such as temperature, moisture, light, nutrients etc.

Behavioral ecology
Interested in behavioral aspects of interactions between organisms and environment

Evolutionary ecology
Interested in how organisms have evolved in their interactions with the environment.

Basic science
Accumulation of knowledge for its own sake to help explain the world around us

Applied science
Uses the laws of basic science to solve specific problems

Landscape ecology
Study of human impacts and disturbance on spacial patterns across the landscape

Restoration ecology
Concerned with restoration of highly disturbed ecosystems

Conservation biology
Concerned with global reduction in biological diversity

Characteristics of ecosystems
-Do not have definite boundaries
-Do not stand alone

Components of an ecosystem
-dead organic matter

Capture energy from solar radiation and store it in chemical bonds of organic substances

-consumers and decomposers
– consumers feed on living organisms
– decomposers feed on dead remains or detritus

C3 pathway
-Involves 3-carbon PGA intermediate compound
-requires high CO2
– stomata opened
– temperate climates

C4 Pathway
-Involves 4-carbon intermediate compound
-lower CO2 required
-stomata partially closed

Stages of decomposition

Loss of soluble compounds carried away by water

Physical break up of leaves and other organic matter into smaller particles

Chemical breakdown of large organic compounds into smaller compounds

Conversion of organic compounds to inorganic

Immobilization of inorganic nutrients in living tissues of decomposers

Any heritable trait that increases the fitness of an organism to live under a given set of environmental conditions

Contribution an individual makes to the general pool of future generations

Phenotypic plasticity
Phenotypic variation in individuals with the same genotype

Limiting factors
Subset of environmental factors that determines where an organism can survive and reproduce

Seasonal changes in an organisms physiology or morphology resulting from long-term exposure to different environmental conditions

Ability of organisms to maiantain constant conditions within their bodies

Negative feedback
Occurs when an increase in a substance or activity stops or reverses the process that lead to that increase

Long term pattern of all the weather info that describes a region

State of the atmosphere at a given place and time

The movement of air masses resulting from unequal heating of earths surface

Coriolis effect
Deflection of free moving objects, including air currents, due to earths rotation

Climate control factors
-land vs water
-position relative to prevailing winds
-ocean currents
-pressure belts

Orographic lifting
Air forced upward on windward slopes of mountains

Intercontinental convergence
Causes rainy climate near equatorial

Xeric microclimate
Warm, dry conditions with large temperature fluctuations

Mesic microclimate
Cool, moisture conditions with lower

Unique association of plants and animals that covers a large geographic area

Holdridge life zone
Similar to biomedical but based on climate as opposed to dominant vegetation

Cohesion of water molecules allows water to move up narrow tubes

Total amount of water put back into the atmosphere due to transpiration and evaporation

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