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This flashcard set includes the vocabulary words and definitions from Chp 53: Population Ecology (Biology 9E by Campbell et al, 2011). Find more biology resources at:

population ecology

the study of populations in relation to their environment


a group of individuals of a single species living in the same general area


the number of individuals per unit area or volume


the pattern of spacing among individuals within the boundaries of the population

mark-recapture method

a sampling technique used to estimate the size of animal populations


the movement into a population of new individuals from other areas


the movement of individuals out of a population


the defense of a bounded physical space against encroachment by other individuals


the study of the vital statistics of populations and how they change over time

life table

age-specific summary of the survival pattern of a population


a group of individuals of the same age, from birth until all are dead

survivorship curve

a plot of the proportion or numbers in a cohort still alive at each age

life history

the traits that affect an organism's schedule of reproduction and survival, from birth through reproduction to death


reproduction in which an organism produces all of its offspring in a single event; also known as big-bang reproduction


reproduction in which adults produce offspring over many years; also known as repeated reproduction

exponential population growth

an increase in the number of individuals in an ideal, unlimited environment, represented by a J-shaped curve when population size is plotted over time

carrying capacity

the maximum population size that can be supported by the available resources

logistic population growth

an increase in the number of individuals that levels off as population size approaches carrying capacity


a life history in which relatively few offspring are produced and each offspring has a good chance of survival


a life history in which many offspring are produced but each offspring has a poor chance of survival

density independent

referring to any characteristic that is not affected by population density

density dependent

referring to any characteristic that varies according to an increase in population density

population dynamics

the study that focuses on the complex interactions between biotic and abiotic factors that cause variation in the size of populations

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