12 terms

biology chapter 13

key words for the chapter
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Autotrophs
plant capable of synthesizing its own food from simple organic substances
Commensalism
symbiotic relationship in which one member of the association benefits and the other is neither helped nor harmed
Consumers
Organisms that obtain their energy and organic matter by eating or ingesting the organic matter of other organisms; also termed heterotrophs
Decomposers
organisms that break down wastes and dead organisms and return raw materials to the environment
Detritivores
organisms that can break down and absorb organic matter of dead organisms or their products
Ecosystems
Biological units comprising the community living in a descrete region, the non-living surroundings and the interactions occuring within the community and between the community and its surroundings.
Heterotrophs
organisms that ingest or absorb food in the form of organic material form their environment; also known as consumers
Mutualism
a relationship between two species in which both species benefit
Niche overlap
Situation in an ecosystem in which different species are in competition for the same resources. In natural ecosystem is typically zero or minimal.
Niche seperation
situation in an ecosystem in which different species in the community use different resources such that the two species have no degree of niche overlap
Photosynthesis
process by which plants and some other organisms use light energy to convert water and carbon dioxide into oxygen and high-energy carbohydrates such as sugars and starches
Symbiosis
prolonged association between different species in a community in which at least one partner benefits; includes parasitism, mutualism and commensalism