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55 terms

303 MIDTERM Review

STUDY
PLAY
photosynthesis
process by which plants use the sun's energy to convert water and carbon dioxide into sugars
law of 10%
only 10% of the energy gets passed on to the next trophic level in a food chain
observation
the process of obtaining information using the senses; fact
inference
an explanation for an observation
hypothesis
a testable explanation for an observation
independent variable
the variable that you are changing/manipulating
dependent variable
the variable that is measured in an experiment; changes due to the independent varable
control group
in an experiment, the standard that is used for comparison; usually the group that you keep normal
constants
the factors that remain the same in an experiment (ex. time, amount of water, etc.)
abiotic factors
nonliving things found in the environment
biotic factors
living things found in the environment
natural selection
"reproduction of the fittest;" process where the individuals best suited for the environment survive, reproduce, and pass along their superior genes
organism
a living thing
pesticide resistance
when a species is no longer affected by the pesticide; happens due to natural selection
food web
diagram that shows all of the feeding relationships between organisms in an ecosystem
food chain
a linear path that shows the flow of energy from one organism to another
carnivore
consumer that only eats meat
herbivore
consumer that only eats plants
omnivore
consumer that eats meat and plants
consumer
organism that gets its energy by eating another organism
producer
organism that makes its own energy (usually by photosynthesis)
trophic level
step on food chain/pyramid where organism eats
cellular respiration
process by which organisms get energy from food (opposite of photosynthesis)
Erosion
removal of soil by water, wind, or plowing
topsoil
upper layer of soil containing a large portion of organic matter and nutrients
persistent pesticide
a pesticide that doesn't break down easily and remains in the ecosystem for a long time
desertification
loss of topsoil that makes land no longer fertile
integrated pest management
aims to reduce pests with minimal environmental damage
fertile
land that is able to grow crops
GMO
genetically modified organism; takes a favorable trait from one organism and puts it into another organism in order to make it better
no-till farming
does not overturn soil and plants seeds directly in last years cover crop; causes less erosion
agriculture
production of crops and livestock by farming
pest
any living organism that is found where it is not wanted and is causing damage
pesticide
something that kills a pest
biological pesticide
a living organism that can be used to get rid of a pest
point source pollution
pollution that comes from one source that you can point to
nonpoint source pollution
pollution that comes from multiple sources so the source can't be identified
impervious surfaces
surface, such as a parking lot, street, or sidewalk that won't allow water to absorb into the ground
watershed
area of land that drains to one place
genetic pollution
when an invasive species takes over in an area so that the native species can no longer live
thermal pollution
water that gets heated up when it is used during the cooling process at a powerplant
runoff
rain that doesn't percolate into the ground, but instead flows to a body of water
percolation
water that gets absorbed into the soil and travels down to the aquifer
evaporation
liquid water that gets heated up and becomes water vapor
condensation
when water vapor comes together to become clouds
transpiration
water that travels through plants and evaporates out of their leaves
surface water
water that's on the surface; rivers, lakes, ocean
aquifer
rock formation under the ground that stores water
reservoir
a man-made lake created when a dam is put on a river
eutrophication
an algal bloom; created when nitrogen and phosphorus are added to the water
macroinvertebrate
a small aquatic organism that is large enough to see without a microscope and doesn't have a backbone
desalination
when salt is taken out of saltwater to create freshwater
indicator species
organisms that tell you about the health of the ecosystem
wastewater
water that comes from sinks, toilets, showers, storm drains
sludge
the solids that sink to the bottom during wastewater treatment