Flashcards in Ecology Deck (68)
What is ecology?
The study of interactions between organisms and the environment
What are included in the environment of any organism?
-All the organisms living in the environment, the biota
Why is ecology the most complex of all the sciences?
-Multiple levels of interaction
-Unique individuals in biological systems
What does ecology involve?
-Descriptive life history
What are the six different levels of ecology?
1. Organismal ecology
2. Population ecology
3. Community ecology
4. Ecosystem ecology
5. Landscape ecology
6. Global ecology
What are two questions to think of for organismal ecology?
-How do an organism structure, physiology, and behaviour meet environmental challenges?
-How do flamingoes pick mates?
What is population ecology?
-A population is a group of individuals of the same species living in the same area
-What environmental factors influence reproductive rates of flamingoes?
What is community ecology?
-A community consists of all organisms of all species in a living area
-What factors influence the diversity of species that interact at a lake?
What is ecosystem ecology?
-Ecosystems consist of all organisms of all species living in an area(biotic and abiotic)
-What factors control total for synthetic productivity in aquatic ecosystems?
What is landscape ecology?
-A landscape or seascape is a mosaic of connected ecosystems
-To what extent do nutrients from terrestrial ecosystems affect organisms in the lake?
What is global ecology?
-The biosphere is the global ecosystem, the sum of all planets ecosystems
-Global scale ecology examines the influence of energy and materials on organisms across the biosphere
-How do ocean currents affect crustacean distribution around the world?
How are ecology and evolutionary biology related?
Events that occur an ecological time translate into a facts over evolutionary time
What four major components make up climate?
Temperature, precipitation, sunlight and wind
What is climate?
Prevailing weather conditions in a particular area that is a much longer term than weather
What are the two ways climate can be described?
Macro climate- Patterns on the global, regional and local levels
Microclimate-Very fine patterns such as those encountered by the community of organisms underneath a fallen log
How are global climate patterns determined?
By input of solar energy and the planets movement in space
What play major roles in determining climate?
Global air circulation and precipitation
What are the two different kinds of winds?
Cooling trade winds blow east to west in the tropics and prevailing westerly winds blow west to east in the temperate zone
What is seasonality?
-Seasonal variation in light and temperatures increases towards the poles
-This is caused by the tilt of the earths axis of rotation and its annual pass around the sun
-Belts for wet and dry air straddling the equator shift throughout the year with the changing angle of the sun
What affects ocean currents?
Changing wind patterns
What is the gulf stream?
He carries warm water from the equator to the north Atlantic
What's two bodies of water moderate the climate of nearby terrestrial environments?
Ocean currents and large lakes
What do mountains have a significant effect on?
-Amount of sunlight reaching an area
What are biomes?
-A major type of ecological associations that occupy brought a geographic regions of land or water
-Varying combinations of both biotic and abiotic factors determine the nature of earths many biomes
What are biomes affected by?
Average temperature and precipitation as well as patterns throughout the year
What are terrestrial biomes?
-Often named for major physical or climatic factors as well as for vegetation
-Area of intergradation, called an Eco tone, may be wide or narrow
What is a tropical forest?
-Tropical rainforests have a constant rainfall well tropical dry forest have a highly seasonal precipitation
-They are vertically layered and competition for light is intense
What is a desert?
-Precipitation varies, <30 cm per year
-Plants adapted for heat and desiccation tolerance, water storage and reduced leaf surface area
What is a savanna?
-Savanna precipitation and temperature are seasonal
-Grasses and forbs make up most of the ground cover