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41 terms

BIO120 - Ecosystems & Energy

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ecological succession
a change in community composition over time
primary succession
a change in community composition over time that starts on areas devoid of soil
secondary succession
a change in community composition over time that starts on areas where there is already soil (re: abandoned fields)
an ecosystem contains _____ and ____ components
biotic, abiotic
biotic
populations of organisms
abiotic
inorganic nutrients, water, temperature, wind, etc.
autotrophs
producers that make food for themselves and for consumers
most autotrophs are ____ organisms
photosynthetic
heterotrophs
consumers that take in preformed food
consumers may be:
herbivores, carnivores, omnivores, decomposers, detritus feeders
detritus
partially decomposed organic matter in the soil and water
every ecosystem is characterized by two phenomena:
energy flows in one direction from the sun to producers and consumers, with a lot of it lost as heat; and chemicals cycle when inorganic nutrients pass from organisms to the atmosphere or soil
ecosystems are dependent upon
a continual supply of solar energy
food web
the interconnected feeding relationships in an ecosystem
grazing food web
the upper portion of a food web based on living plants
detrital food web
the lower portion of a food web based on detritus and the organisms of decay
trophic level
all the organisms that feed at a particular link in a food chain
food chain
a diagram that link organisms together by who eats whom
what can the shortness of food chains be attributed to?
the loss of energy between trophic levels
ecological pyramids depict
the flow of energy with large losses between successive trophic levels
biome
a large biogeographical unit of the biosphere that has a particular mix of plants and animals that are adapted to living under certain environmental conditions
a biome's distribution can be predicted by
temperature and rainfall
teh distribution of biomes and thus the pattern of life on earth is determined principally by
climate
the effect of temperature is seen not only when we consider ____ but also when we consider ____
latitude, altitude
the arctic tundra
encircles the earth just south of ice-covered seas in the northern hemisphere, covering 20% of the earth's land surface; cold, dark, layer of permafrost is present in the poorly drained soil
coniferous forests are found in these three locations:
taiga, near mountain tops, temperate rain forests
taiga
area that extends around the world in the northern part of north america and eurasia
temperate rain forests are found
along the pacific coast of north america
temperate deciduous forests are found
south of taiga in eastern north america, eastern asia, and much of europe
temperate deciduous forest climate
moderate with relatively high rainfall, well-defined seasons, large growing season
____ provides a variety of habitats for birds, insects, and ground life
stratification
deciduous forest soils are ____
rich
in the tropical rain forests near the equator, the weather is ____ and rainfall is ____
always warm, plentiful
what is the most diverse biome?
tropical rain forests
shrubs
shorter than trees with a woody persistent stem and no central trunk; thick evergreen leaves with a waxy protective coating
chaparral shrub-land
in california; lacks an understory and is highly flammable
grasslands occur where
rainfall is greater than 25 cm but insufficient to support trees
savannas
grasslands that contain some trees that occur where a relatively cool dry season followed by a hot, rainy one
what supports the greatest variety and number of large herbivores?
african savanna
deserts
characterized by low precipitation; some have no plants but others have some
biomagnification
toxins become more concentrated in organisms as you go up the food chain