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APES Test 3
Terms in this set (62)
What is biodiversity (biological diversity)?
the variety of the earth's species, or varying life forms, the genes they contain, the ecosystems in which they live, and the ecosystems processes such as energy flow and nutrient cycling that sustain all life
What is the importance of biodiversity?
this concept provides us with the ecosystem services that sustain us and our economies
What is a species?
a group of organisms with a set of characteristics that distinguish it from other groups of organisms, and in sexually reproducing organisms, individuals must be able to mate and produce fertile offspring in order to be grouped within a species
What is the importance of insects?
they perform vital ecosystem services, like pollination, a process that allows flowering plants to reproduce sexually, and they eat pests which helps to control the populations of pest species
What is a biome?
large regions like forests, deserts, and grasslands with distinct climates and certain species (especially vegetation) adapted to them
What are fossils?
mineralized or petrified replicas of skeletons, bones, teeth, shells, leaves, and seeds or impressions of such items found in rocks
What is biological evolution (evolution)?
the process whereby the earth's life changes over time through changes in the genes of populations of organisms in the succeeding generations
What is the theory of evolution?
a theory that states all species evolved from earlier, ancestral species; in other words life comes from life
What is natural selection?
the process in which individuals with certain traits are more likely to survive and reproduce under a particular set of environmental conditions than are those without those traits
What are mutations?
changes in the DNA molecules of a gene in any cell that can be inherited by offspring
What is an adaptation (adaptive trait)?
any heritable trait that improves the ability of an individual organism to survive and to reproduce at a higher rate than other individuals in a population are able to do under prevailing environmental conditions
What is speciation?
the process in which one species splits into two or more different species-- for sexually reproducing organisms a new species forms when one population of a species has evolved to the point where its member can no longer breed and produce fertile offspring of another population that did not change or evolved differently
What is geographic isolation?
when different groups of the same population of a species become physically isolated from one another for a long period of time
What is reproductive isolation?
where a mutation and change by natural selection operate independently in the gene pools of geographically isolated populations
What is artificial selection?
where we humans select one or more desirable genetic traits in the population of a plant or animal such as a type of wheat, fruit, or dog and then use selective breeding or crossbreeding to generate populations of species containing large numbers of individuals with desired traits
What is genetic engineering?
where scientists alter genetic material by adding, deleting, or changing segments of its DNA to produce desirable traits or to eliminate undesirable ones
What is extinction?
the process in which an entire species ceases to exist
What is an endemic species?
a species that is found in only one area who are especially vulnerable to extinction
What is a background extinction rate?
the rate at which species die off every year, which throughout history has been at a low rate of 0.0001% of all species every year
What is a mass extinction?
a significant rise in extinction rates above the background level
What is species diversity?
the number and variety of species a community and ecosystem contains
What is species richness?
the number of different species in a given area
What is species evenness?
a measure of the relative abundance or the comparative numbers of individuals of each species present
What is an ecological niche?
a species way of life in a community and includes everything that affects its survival and reproduction, such as how much water and sunlight it needs, how much space it requires, what it feeds on, and the temperatures and other conditions it can tolerate
What is a habitat?
a place where a species lives, contrary to a niche which is a pattern of living
What is a generalist species?
a species with a broad niche, meaning they can live in many different places, eat a variety of foods, and often can tolerate a wide range of environmental conditions, like a raccon
What is a specialist species?
species that occupy narrow niches meaning they may only be able to live in one type of habitat, use one or only a few types of food, or only be able to tolerate a narrow range of climatic and other environmental conditions, like giant pandas
What is a native species?
a species that normally lives and thrives in a particular ecosystem, like lizards (native to SB)
What is a nonnative species?
a species either deliberately or accidentally introduced to an ecosystem, and is often called invasive, alien, or exotic, like african honeybees that are now referred to as killer bees after they were introduced to Brazil
What is an indicator species?
a species that provides early warnings of damage to a community or an ecosystem, like an alligator
What is a keystone species?
a species whose roles have a large effect on the types and abundance of the other species in an ecosystem, like wolves or leopards
What is interspecific competition?
when members of two or more species interact to use the same limited resources such as food, water, light, and space
What is resource partitioning?
when species competing for similar scarce resources evolve specialized traits that allow them to share resources by using parts of them, using them at different times, or using them in different ways
What is predation?
a member of one species (the predator) feeding on all or part of a living organism (the prey) as part of a food web
What is a predator?
an animal that feeds on prey
What is prey?
an animal that a predator feeds on
What is coevolution?
when populations of two different species interact in such a way over a long period of time, changes in gene pool of one species can lead to changes in the gene pool of the other, and such changes can help both competing species to become more competitive or to avoid or reduce competition
What is parasitism?
when one species (the parasite) feeds on another organism (the host), usually by living inside of the host, this relationship is beneficial to the parasite, but the host is often harmed
What is mutualism?
when two species behave in ways that benefit both by providing each with food, shelter, or some other resource
What is commensalism?
an interaction that benefits one species but has little, if any beneficial or harmful effect on the other
What is ecological succession?
the normally gradual change in species composition in a given area
What is primary ecological succession?
the gradual establishment of communities of different species in lifeless areas where there is no soil in a terrestrial ecosystem or no bottom sediment in an aquatic ecosystem
What is secondary ecological succession?
where a series of communities or ecosystems with different species develop in places containing soil or bottom sediment
What is inertia (persistence)?
the ability of living system such as a grassland or a forest survive moderate disturbances
What is resilience?
the ability of a living terrestrial system to be restored through secondary ecological succession after a more severe disturbance
What is a population?
a group of interbreeding individuals of the same species
What is a population's age structure?
its distribution of of individuals among various age groups-- can have a strong effect on how rapidly it grows or declines
What is a range of tolerance?
a variation in a populations physical and chemical environment
What is a limiting factor?
a physical or chemical factor that can help to determine the number of organisms in a population-- can be one or more factors in a population
What is the limiting factor principle?
Too much or too little of any physical or chemical factor can limit or prevent the growth of a population, even if all other factors are at or near the optimal range of tolerance
What is population density?
the number of individuals in a population found within a defined area or volume
What is environmental resistance?
the combination of all factors that act to limit the growth of a population and it largely determines the area's carrying capacity
What is an area's carrying capacity?
the maximum population of a given species that a particular habitat can sustain indefinitely
What is a population crash?
a sharp decline in the population of a species
What is a k-selected species?
one with relatively stable populations and they tend to produce relatively low numbers of offspring
What is a r-selected species?
those that place an emphasis on a high growth rate, and, typically exploit less-crowded ecological niches, and produce many offspring, each of which has a relatively low probability of surviving to adulthood
What is a survivorship curve?
a graph showing the number or proportion of individuals surviving to each age for a given species or group (e.g. males or females); can be constructed for a given cohort (a group of individuals of roughly the same age) based on a life table
What is a limiting nutrient?
The nutrient in short supply relative to the others will be exhausted first and will thus limit cellular growth
What is a density dependent limiting factor?
a limiting factor depending on how large the population is (ex. disease, food)
What is a density independent limiting factor?
a limiting factor that does not depend on the size of the population it is effecting (ex. sunlight, precipitation)
What is amensalism?
association between organisms of two different species in which one is inhibited or destroyed and the other is unaffected
What is herbivory?
the eating of plants, especially ones that are still living
Recommended textbook explanations
Miller and Levine Biology
Joseph S. Levine, Kenneth R. Miller
Modern Biology: Student Edition
Janet L. Hopson, Postlethwait
Johnson, Peter H. Raven
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