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A human eats a deer. Which of these terms applies to the relationship between the human and the deer?


Humans and sharks both eat fish. Which of these terms applies to the relationship between the human and the shark?


Humans who have pets tend to be healthier than humans who do not have pets. Which of these terms applies to the relationship between a human and a pet?


Which of these terms applies to the relationship between a dog and a blood-sucking tick?


An egret eats insects stirred up by grazing animals. Which of these terms applies to the relationship between the egret and the grazing animal?


In an ecosystem, phytoplankton are _____.


An earthworm that feeds on the remains of plants and animals is acting as a _____.


secondary consumer

When a human eats a steak, the human is acting as a _____.

A cow eating grass is an example of a _____.

primary consumer

A human who just ate a hamburger is eaten by a shark while swimming. The shark is acting as a _____.

tertiary consumer

Which of these is a starting point for primary succession?

surface exposed by retreating glacier

Plants use _____ as a source of energy.


What element is found in all organic compounds?


What name is given to organisms that convert the carbon in organic compounds into carbon in carbon dioxide?


What name is given to the process by which detritivores return carbon to the atmosphere?


removes carbon from the atmosphere?


Detritus is composed of _____.

dead organic matter and excretory wastes

Nitrifying bacteria convert _____ to _____.

ammoinium __ nitrates

_____ removes nitrogen from the atmosphere.

Nitrogen fixation

Denitrifying bacteria convert _____ to _____.

nitrates __ nitrogen gas

The study of the interaction of organisms with each other and their environment involves non-living factors, also called _________________, and living factors, which are referred to as __________________.

abiotic components; biotic components

Which of the following options lists the ecological hierarchy in the correct order, from largest to smallest?

biosphere; ecosystem; community; population; organism

A scientist is studying how sea slugs respond to predators. Which hierarchical level of ecology does this represent?


Desert owls are inactive during the day and active at night. They also have small bodies. This describes _____ adaptation to the hot and dry desert.

anatomical and behaviora

Horned lizards are desert animals that are active during the day. Their skin and kidneys are efficient at conserving water; when they get hot, they move to the shade so they can cool off. This describes _____ adaptation to the hot and dry desert.

anatomical, behavioral, and physiological

The benthic zone of aquatic environments is defined as the _____.

substrate at the bottom of the body of water


The _____ biome is the largest of Earth's biomes.

A(n) _____ is a region where fresh water and salt water mix.


What are the two major factors determining the distribution of terrestrial biomes?

temperature and light

Which of these biomes is characterized by little rainfall?


Which of these is the largest terrestrial biome on Earth?

confierous forest

Which biome is characterized by an extensive canopy that allows little light to penetrate to the ground and by the presence of epiphytes?

tropical rain forest

Which biome is characterized by the presence of permafrost?


Which location on Earth receives the most solar radiation per unit area?


what is a biodiversity hotspot?

number of endemic species, number of species, degree to which the species are threatened to extiction

A sink habitat is where a subpopulation's death rate is _____.

greater than its reproductive rate

Fertilizer runoff can result in _____ a lake.

the eutrophication of

Most biodiversity hot spots are in the _____.


A group of individuals of a single species that occupy the same general area defines a


Which of the following is an example of a population?

all students in classroom

The pattern of distribution for a certain species of kelp is clumped. We would expect that the pattern of distribution for a population of snails that live on the kelp would be


Assume that there are five alligators per acre in a swamp in northern Florida. This is a measure of the alligator population's


You drive through Iowa in the spring and notice that along a stretch of several kilometers, every third fence post has a male redwing blackbird perched on it defending its nesting territory. This is an example of

uniform disperstion

A Type I survivorship curve is the result of which of the following life history traits?

parents providing extended care for their young

A survivorship curve

is a graph that plots an individual's likelihood of being alive as a function of age.

The maximum number of individuals a habitat can support is called its

carrying capacity

In the logistic growth model, as population size increases, birth rates

rates decline and/or death rates increase.

An ecological footprint

is a means of understanding resource availability and usage.

The human population on Earth is expected to reach 9.5 billion people by


A community is composed of

potentially interacting populations of different kinds of organisms.

An owl and a hawk both eat mice. Which of these terms describes the relationship between a hawk and an owl?


When two different populations in a community benefit from their relationship with each other, the result is called


The sum total of a population's use of the biotic and abiotic resources of its habitat constitutes its


In an ecosystem, you would expect to find interspecific competition between

populations of two species that occupy the same niche.

Dinoflagellates are important to coral and coral-dwelling animals because they

produce energy that is used by coral animals through photosynthesis.

One mechanism that prey populations evolve to avoid predation is


Some herbivore-plant interactions evolved through a series of reciprocal evolutionary adaptations in both species. The process is called


Most plants have a variety of chemicals, spines, and thorns because the plants

cannot run away from herbivores.

In addition to environmental factors, community composition of plants can be severely compromised by

parasites and pathogens

The primary decomposers of a community are called


In a hypothetical food chain consisting of grass, grasshoppers, sparrows, and hawks, the grasshoppers are

primary consumers

On Earth, most organic molecules are produced by


Within an ecosystem, a tree is a


reduction in the number of mice

In a certain ecosystem, field mice are preyed on by snakes and hawks. The entry of wild dogs into the system adds another predator of the mice. Of the following, the most likely short-term result of this addition is

The number of species in a community is called the

species richness

Which of the following statements regarding food webs is true?

Several species of primary consumers may feed on the same species of producer.

During ecological succession, the species composition of a plant community generally

changes gradually because each species responds differently to the changing environment.

Biological control is defined as

the intentional release of a natural enemy of a pest population.

Non-native species that are introduced in new environments, spread far beyond the original point of introduction, and cause damage are called

invasive species.

The flow of ________ into ecosystems occurs in one direction only, while ________ are recycled within the ecosystem itself.

energy ___ chemicals

Which of the following processes does not occur in ecosystems?

The energy source that powers the system is used by consumers to make organic compounds.

For a given area and time period, the amount of solar energy converted to chemical energy is called

primary production.

Carbon mainly cycles between the biotic and abiotic worlds through the processes of

respiration and photosynthesis.

The primary goal of conservation biology is to

counter the loss of biodiversity.

The three greatest current threats to biodiversity, in order starting with the greatest, are

habitat destruction, the introduction of invasive species, and overexploitation.

CO2 flooding into the atmosphere is absorbed by ________ and converted into biomass.

photosynthetic organisms

An important change in populations and species in response to climate change is


An organism's responses to climate change that result in phenotypic variation is called

phenotypic plasticity.

The study of the interaction of organisms with each other and their environment involves non-living factors, also called _________________, and living factors, which are referred to as __________________.

abiotic components; biotic components

Which of the following options lists the ecological hierarchy in the correct order, from largest to smallest?

biosphere; ecosystem; community; population; organism

A scientist is studying how sea slugs respond to predators. Which hierarchical level of ecology does this represent?


Which hierarchical level is represented by a survey of students and their habits?


What is the largest hierarchical level that global warming affects?


Population Ecology

the study of factors that affect population density and growth


a group of individuals of a single species that occupy the same general area

population density

the numer of individuals of a species per unit area of volume of habitat

age structures

the distribution of individuals in different age-groups

Life Tables

track survivalship, and mortality the chance of an individual in a given population surviving to various ages

Survivorship curve

a plot of the number of individuals still alive at each age in the maximum life span -use percentages

Type I

produce few offspring, but give them good care, increasing the likelihood hat they will survive to maturity

Type III

low survivorship for the very young, followed by a period when survivorship is high for those few individuals who live to a certain age

Type II

intermediate, there are no more vulnerable at one stage of the life cycle than another

Life history

the set of traits that affect an organism's schedule of reproduction and survival

opportunistic life history

Type III, one that enables the plant or animal to take immediate advantage of favorable conditions

Equilibrial life history

pattern of developing and reaching sexual maturity slowly and producing few, well-cared-for offspring

exponential population growth

describes the expansion of a population in an ideal, unlimited environment, -J shaped curve

limiting factors

environmental factors that hold population growth in check

carrying capacity

the maximum population size that a particular environment can sustain

logistic population growth

the growth rate decreases as the population size approaches carrying capacity, -s shaped

intraspecific competition

competition between individuals of the same species for the same limited resources

density-dependent factor

a population-limiting factor whose effects intensify as the population increases in density

density-independent factor

a population limiting factor whose intensity is unrelated to population density

threatened species

species that are likely to become endangered in the foreseeable future

invasive species

non-native species that has spread far beyond the original point of introduction and causes environmental or economic damage by colonizing an dominating suitable habitats

biological control

the intentional release of a natural enemy to attack a pest population


evolutionary changes in which an adaptation of one species leads to the counter adaptation in a second species

population momentum

the increased proportion of women of child bearing age in the population

ecological footprint

an estimate of the amount of land required to provied the raw materials an individual or a population consumes


the scientific study of the interactions between organisms and their environments

Biotic Factors

all of the organisms in the area that make up the living component of the environment

Abiotic factors

make up the environment's nonliving component ndinclude chemical and physical factors, such as temp, light, water, minerals, and air.


the specific environment it lives in, -biotic and abiotic

Organismal ecology

concerned with the evolutionary adaptions that enable individual organisms to meet the challenges posed by their abiotic environments.


a group of individuals of the same species living in a particular geographic area

population ecology

concentrates mainly on factors that affect population density and growth


consists of all the organisms that inhabit a particular area

community ecology

focus on how interactions between species such as predation and competition affect community structure and organization


includes all the abiotic factors in addition to the community of species in a certain area

ecosystem ecology

questions concern energy flow and the cycling of chemicals among the various biotic and abiotic factors


the global ecosystem, the sum of all the planet's ecosystems

Abiotic factors of the biosphere

energy source- sunlight, temperature, water, nutrients, other aquatic factors, other terrestrial factors-wind

How are the fiels of ecology and evolution linked?

the process of evolutionary adaptation via natural selection results from the interactions of organisms with their environments


a physiological response that is a gradual, thought still reversible, physiological adjustment that occurs in response to an environmental change

anatomical response

a response to an environmental challenge that results in a change in body shape or structure


a major terrestrial or aquatic life zone, characterized by vegetation type in terrestrial biomes or the physical environment in aquatic biomes

photic zone

shallow water near shore and the upper layer of water away from the shore, -light is available for photosynthesis

aphotic zone

where light levels are two low to support photosynthesis

benthic zone

the bottom of all aquatic biomes made up of sand and organic sediments


a transitional biome between an aquatic ecosystem and a terrestrial one

benthic realm

sea floor

pelagic realm

all open water


photosynthetic algae and bacteria


free-floating animals, including many microscopic ones

coral reef

occurs in the photic zone of warm tropical waters in scattered locations around the globe


a transition area between a river and the ocean


the region from the tropic of cancer to the tropic of Capricorn

temperate zones

latitudes between the tropics and the arctic circle in the north and the antarctic circle in the south

Why is there so much rainfall in the tropics?

air at the equator rises as it is warmed by direct sunlight. as the air rises, it cools. this causes cloud formation and rainfall because cool air holds less moisture than warm air

Why are climbing plants common in rain forests?

climbing is a plant adaptation for reaching sunlight in a closed canopy, where little sunlight reaches the forest floor

tropical forest

occur in equatorial areas where the temperatures is warm and days are 11-12 hours long year round


dominated by grasses and scattered trees. temp is warm year round. rainfall varies dramatically with season


form from cool ocean currents circulating offshore, producing mile, rainy winters and hot, dry summers.

temperate grassland

some of the characteristics of tropical savannas but are mostly treeless, except along rivers or streams , and are found in regions of relatively cold winter temperatures

temperate broadleaf forests

occur throughout midlatitudes where there is sufficient moisture to support the growth of large trees.

coniferous forests

cone-bearing evergreen trees such as pine, spruce, fir, and hemlock


northern coniferous forest- largest terrestrial biome

temperate rain forests

coastal North America area that are coniferous forests


covers expansive areas of the artic between the taiga and polar ice


bitterly cold temperatures and high winds are responsible for the absence of trees and other tall plants

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