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GACS lclab - Harsh - Honors Biology - Chapter 4 - Section 4.1 - Population Dynamics

population density

the number of organisms per unit area


the pattern of spacing of a population within an area

uniform, clumped groups, random

3 main types of dispersion

black bears

usually disperse in uniform arrangement

american bison

dispersed in clumped groups or herds

white-tailed deer

dispersed randomly with unpredictable spacing


a primary factor in in the pattern of dispersion

density-independent factor

any factor in the environment that does not depend on the number of members in a population per unit area

density-independent factor

usually abiotic and include natural phenomena such as weather events--drought or flooding

density-dependent factor

any factor in the environment that depends on the number of members in a populaton per unit area

density-dependent factor

usually biotic factors such as predation, disease, parasites and competition

population biologist

studies the characteristics of populations, such as growth, size, distribution, or genetics.

density-dependent factors

disease, competition, parasites

population growth rate

explains how fast a given population grows


the birthrate or the number of individuals born in a given time period


the number of deaths that occur in the population during a given time period


term ecologists use to describe the number of individuals moving away from a population


term ecologists use to describe the number of individuals moving into a population

logistic growth

when a population exhibits logistic growth

carrying capacity

when a population levels off at a limit

expotential growth model

population grows slow at first , then increases rapidly

lag phase

in the expotential growth model, when the population grows slow at first

logistic growth model

populations growth slows or stops following expontential growth, at the populations carrying capacity

carrying capacity

the maximum number of individuals in a species that an environment can support for the long term

carrying capacity

limited by the energy, water oxygen and nutrients available


an adaption for living in an environment where fluctuation in biotic or abiotic factors occur


usually have short life spans and produce many offspring


generally is a larger organism that has a long life span, produces few off-spring and whose population reaches equilibrium at the carrying capacity

reproductive strategy of an r-strategist

produce as many offspring as possible in a short period of time to take advantge of some environmental factors

reproductive strategy of an k-strategist

produce only a few offspring that have a better chance of living to reproductive age because of the energy, resources and time invested in care for the young

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