25 terms

Unit 9: Interdependence of Organisms

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Ecosystem
A group of organisms interacting with one another and their environment
Biotic Factors
The living parts of an ecosystem
Abiotic Factors
The non-living parts of an ecosystem including temperature, sunlight, soil, water and air
Freshwater Ecosystem
Water ecosystems that contain little or no salt such as lakes, ponds and streams
Marine Ecosystem
Ecosystems that have salt water such as oceans and seas
Terrestrial Ecosystem
An ecosystem found on land
Producer/Autotroph
An organism that can make its own food
Consumer/Heterotroph
An organism that feeds on other organisms
Decomposer
An organism that consumes waste and dead organisms to get energy
Predator
An organism that exists by preying, or feeding, on other organisms
Prey
An organism that is hunted by a predator for food
Parasite
An organism that lives on or in an organism of another species and obtains its nutrition from the body of that organism
Host
An organism from which a parasite obtains nutrition
Food Chain
A diagram that shows how energy is transferred from organism to organism in an ecosystem
Food Web
A diagram that shows all the food chains in an ecosystem
Species
A group of organisms capable of reproducing to produce fertile offspring
Population
A group of individuals of the same species living in a given area
Community
All of the populations of different species in an ecosystem
Niche
An organisms function in an ecosystem
Competition
When two or more organisms require the same resources for energy, nutrients or space
Trait
A characteristic that an organism can pass on to its offspring
Adaptation
A trait that helps an organism survive in its environment, especially because of alterations of form or behavior due to natural selection
Mutation
A change in the hereditary material of an organism
Natural Selection
The process by which organisms with favorable adaptations survive and reproduce at a higher rate than those with less favorable adaptations
Extinction
The complete disappearance of a species that occurs when the environment changes and the adaptations of a species are no longer sufficient for survival

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