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Unit 3: Ecology
Terms in this set (96)
Anything that has mass and takes up space
Basic unit of matter
A substance that cannot be broken down into simpler substances
Center of an atom
Positively charged particles
Neutrally charged particles
The use of living organisms to detoxify and restore polluted and degraded ecosystems
Periodic Table of the Elements
A table that classifies elements by their physical and chemical properties; rows are called periods; columns are called groups;
A chemical bond that involves sharing a pair of electrons between atoms in a molecule
Polar covalent bond
A covalent bond in which electrons are not shared equally, which causes a pull on other molecules
Formed when one or more electrons are transferred from one atom to another, creating ions
An atom or group of atoms that has a positive or negative charge.
Compounds composed of only carbon and hydrogen (Crude oil, petroleum, natural gas, etc.)
A homogeneous mixture of two or more substances
large molecule formed by joining smaller organic molecules together
polymers of amino acids which carry out a variety of functions in organisms, including as hormones and enzymes. Kind of like the "machines" of the cell.
macromolecules that direct protein production (DNA & RNA).
polymers that consist of carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen. Sugar = monomer; starch = polymer.
small chemical unit which can join together to become a polymer (this is like a single chain link)
A long molecule consisting of many similar or identical monomers linked together -- like the chain itself.
Energy-rich organic compounds, such as fats, oils, and waxes, that are made of carbon, hydrogen, and oxygen.
A type of weak chemical bond formed when the slightly positive hydrogen atom of a polar covalent bond in one molecule is attracted to the slightly negative atom of a polar covalent bond in another molecule.
Attraction between molecules of the same substance
ice is less dense than water because the molecules spread apart while freezing
Water- due to its polarity and ability to dissolve many different solutes
Resistance to temperature change
Water can absorb large amounts of heat energy before changing temperature
hydrogen ion concentration -- determines how acidic or basic something is.
Contain more H+ ions than OH- ions and have pH values below 7
Alkaline (basic) solutions
Contain more OH- ions than H+ ions and have a pH value above 7
When an event is both an input and an output in the same system.
Negative feedback loop
A loop which tends towards stability. For example a thermostat will stop running the heater when the desired temperature is reached. When the temperature falls low, the thermostat will turn the heater back on.
Positive feedback loop
A feedback loop that drives a system towards an extreme. For example, climate change drives melting ice, which exposes more rock. Rock soaks up heat, which raises the temp, melting more ice.
Processes by which rock, sand, and soil are broken down and carried away
Specifically, Earth's crust and the outer, solid part of the mantle. A subset of the Geosphere
Rocks anywhere on Earth, from the core to the surface.
Consists of all life on Earth and all parts of the Earth in which life exists, including land, water, and the atmosphere.
the envelope of gases surrounding the earth or another planet.
all the waters on the earth's surface, such as lakes and seas, and sometimes including water over the earth's surface, such as clouds.
The thin and solid outermost layer of the Earth above the mantle
The layer of hot, solid (but plastic and moving) material between Earth's crust and core.
The central part of the earth below the mantle
Sections of the Earth's crust that move due to convection currents.
the natural features of the land's surface
Process in which sediment is laid down in new locations.
Divergent plate boundaries
Areas where plates move away from each other, forming either mid oceanic ridges or rift valleys.
Transform plate boundaries
Areas where two plates grind past each other resulting in faults such as the San Andreas Fault. Earthquakes often occur at fault lines.
convergent plate boundaries
A tectonic plate boundary where two plates collide, come together, or crash into each other.
A type of convergent boundary where one plate (oceanic basalt) goes underneath the other (continental granite)
A form of oxygen that has three oxygen atoms in each molecule instead of the usual two.
Evaporation of water from the leaves of a plant
layers of rock and soil that hold groundwater
water that fills the cracks and spaces in underground soil and rock layers
Law of Conservation of Matter
Matter is not created nor destroyed in any chemical or physical change
Substances that organisms need to grow, to repair itself, and to supply with energy
process in which elements, chemical compounds, and other forms of matter are passed from one organism to another and from one part of the biosphere to another
the series of processes by which carbon compounds are interconverted in the environment, chiefly involving the incorporation of carbon dioxide into living tissue by photosynthesis and its return to the atmosphere through respiration, the decay of dead organisms, and the burning of fossil fuels.
Conversion of light energy from the sun into chemical energy. 6CO2 + 6H2O + light energy --> C6H12O6 +6O2
How organisms use oxygen to release the chemical energy in sugars. Releases CO2 and H2O as waste.
Carbon in sediments
Can be stored in lithosphere; e.g. calcium carbonate (limestone) rocks.
Carbon in oceans
- Additional carbon is stored in the ocean
- Many animals pull carbon from water to use in shells, etc.
- Animals die and carbon substances are deposited at the bottom of the ocean
- Oceans contain Earth's second largest store of carbon
Human impacts on carbon cycle
burning fossil fuels and deforestation
Involving mostly the lithosphere and oceans. Needed for cell membranes, DNA, and RNA. Phosphorous is often a limiting factor
A process by which nutrients, particularly phosphorus and nitrogen, become highly concentrated in a body of water, leading to increased growth of organisms such as algae or cyanobacteria.
process of converting nitrogen gas into nitrogen compounds that plants can absorb and use. Primarily done by nitrogen-fixing bacteria and lightning.
Bacteria that convert nitrates into free atmospheric nitrogen
A process to synthesize ammonia on an industrial scale. Developed by German chemists Fritz Haber + Carl Bosch, the process has enabled humans to double the natural rate of nitrogen fixation on Earth and thereby increase agricultural productivity, but also altered the nitrogen cycle.
The study of how living things interact with each other and their environment
A group of similar organisms that can breed and produce fertile offspring.
A group of individuals that belong to the same species and live in the same area
All the different populations that live together in an area
A biological community of interacting organisms and their physical environment.
living parts of an ecosystem
Nonliving components of environment.
Place where an organism lives
anything an organism needs; includes nutrition, shelter, mates, and breeding sites
Number of individuals per unit area
a description of how individuals are distributed with respect to one another
organisms arranged in no particular pattern (likely when neither resources nor other individuals influence distribution)
Distribution where populations are spaced evenly (likely due to competition between population)
individuals are found in groups or patches within the habitat (likely due to availability of resources)
number of males and females of each age in a population
The number of males per 100 females in the population.
Graph showing the number of survivors in different age groups for a particular species.
Type I survivorship curve
a pattern of survival over time in which there is high survival throughout most of the life span, but then individuals start to die in large numbers as they approach old age
Type II survivorship curve
a pattern of survival over time in which there is a relatively constant decline in survivorship throughout most of the life span
Type III survivorship curve
a pattern of survival over time in which there is low survivorship early in life with few individuals reaching adulthood
Movement of individuals into a population
movement of individuals out of an area
seasonal movement into and out of an area
Increased by a fixed percentage each year (doubles every year, e.g.)
Any biotic or abiotic factor that restricts the existence, numbers, reproduction, or distribution of organisms.
Largest number of individuals of a population that a environment can support
Growth pattern in which a population's growth rate slows or stops following a period of exponential growth
factor that limits a population more as population density increases (e.g. disease)
limiting factors whose influence is not affected by population density (e.g. change in climate)
The maximum rate at which a population could increase under ideal conditions
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