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25 terms

Chpater 4 Vocab

Part 2
STUDY
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biome
group of ecosystems that have the same climate and dominant communities
tolerance
organism's capacity to grow or thrive when subjected to an unfavorable environmental factor
microclimate
climate within a small area that differs significantly from the climate of the surrounding area
canopy
dense covering formed by the leafy tops of tall rainforest trees
understory
layer in a rain forest formed by shorter trees and vines
deciduous
tree that sheds its leaves during a particular season each year
coniferous
trees producing seed-bearing cones and have thin leaves shaped like needles
humus
material formed from decaying leaves and other decaying matter
taiga
biome in which the winters are cold but summers are mild enough to allow the ground to thaw
permafrost
layer of permanently frozen subsoil in the tundra
plankton
tiny, free-floating organisms that occur in aquatic ecosystems
phytoplankton
algae and other small, photosynthetic organisms found near the surface of the ocean and forming parts of plankton
zooplankton
tiny animals that form part of the plankton
wetland
ecosystem in which water either covers the soil or is present at or near the surface of the soil for at least part of the year
estuary
wetland formed where rivers meet the ocean
detritus
particles of organic matter that provide food for organisms at the base of an estuary's food web
salt marsh
temperate-zone estuary dominated by salt-tolerant grasses above the low-tide line and by seagrasses under water
mangrove swamp
coastal wetland dominated by mangroves, salt-tolerant woody plants
photic zone
well-lit upper layer of the oceans
aphotic zone
permanently dark layer of the oceans below the photic zone
zonation
prominant horizontal banding of organisms that live in a particular habitat
coastal ocean
marine zone that extends from the lowtide mark to the end of the continental shelf
kelp forest
coastal ocean community named for its dominant organism kelp, a giant brown alga
coral reef
diverse and productive environment named for the coral animals that make up its primary structure
benthos
organisms that live attached to or near the ocean floor