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49 terms

ecology science

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Carrying Capacity
the amount of organisms an ecosystem can support
Equilibrium
when a species reaches stability, balance
Exponential Growth
a j-curved graph that shows when a population increases rapidly
Density Independent
limiting factors that affect the population, regardless of the size(abiotic)
Density Dependent
limiting factors that affect the population depending on the size (biotic)
Competition
compete for space, food, water and shelter
Predation
the action of eating prey
Species
a group of the same types of organisms
Population
a group of organisms of one species that interbreed and live in the same place at the same time
Community
collection of interacting populations
Ecosystem
interaction among the populations in a community and the community's physical surroundings (biotic and abiotic factors)
Growth Rate
the rate a species grows
Zero Population Growth
same amount of births, immigration and deaths, emmigration
Immigration
species moving into an ecosystem
Emigration
species moving out of an ecosystem
Parasitism
symbiotic relationship in which one organism benefits at the expense of the others
Mutualism
symbiotic relationship in which both species benefit
Commensalism
symbiotic relationship in which one species benefits and the other species is neither harmed nor benefited
Ecology
branch of biology developed from natural history; scientific study of interactions among organisms and their environments
Heterotroph
organisms that cannot make their own food and must feed on other organisms
Autotroph
organisms that use energy (from the sun or that is stored in chemical compounds) to manufacture their own nutrients
Producer
an organism that uses photosynthesis (and thus, energy from the sun) to obtain its energy
Consumer
an organism that eats producers or other consumers to obtain its energy
Herbivore
heterotrophs that feed only on plants
Omnivore
heterotrophs that eat both plant and animal material
Carnivore
heterotrophs that feed only on other animals
Top Carnivore
carnivore on top of the food chain; highest
Decomposer
organisms that break down and absorb nutrients from dead organisms; break down the complex compounds of dead and decaying plants and animals into simpler molecules that can be more easily absorbed
Biomass
Renewable organic matter
Food Chain
a simple model that scientists use to show how matter and energy move through an ecosystem
Food Web
expresses all possible feeding relationships at each trophic level in a community; more realistic than a food chain as most organisms depend on more than one species for food
Nutrients
______ are needed for organisms to survive, this are cycled through out the soil.
Energy
the capacity to do work
Abiotic
non-living parts of an organism's environment
Biotic
all living organisms of an organism's environment
Trophic Level
a feeding step representing the passage on energy and materials in a food chain; each level/step represents an organism in the food chain
Carbon Cycle
the cycle in which carbon is passed all throughout the ecosystems so that organisms can use it
Nitrogen Cycle
the cycle in which nitrogen is passed all throughout the ecosystems so that organisms can use it
Phosphorus Cycle
the cycle in which phosphurus is passed all throughout the ecosystems so that organisms can use it
Nitrogen Fixation
how nitrogen is converted into a compund so that it can be used by organisms. This occurs by lightning and bacteria fixing it into the soil
Cellular Respiration
The process in which oxygen is used by organisms and then converted to carbon dioxide and released into the air
Photosynthesis
the process plants use to create glucose and oxygen from converting sunlight (energy), carbon dioxide and water
Greenhouse Effect
the effect that keeps the earth warm by allowing some sunlight heat rays to stay inside the atmosphere
Global Warming
the raise of temperature in the biosphere caused by the excess effects of the greenhouse effect.
Organism
an individual living thing
Prey
species being eaten
Predator
species that feeds on animals
Birth Rate
number of births
Death Rate
number of deaths