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This is a study guide under the subject of (Community) Ecology for the AP Biology Test. Good luck! Pt. 2 Pt. 1 is located here: ------ Pt. 3 is located here:

Community Ecology

Study of the interaction of populations

Interspecific Competition

Form of interaction; is the competition between different species.

Competitive Exclusion Principle (Gause's principle)

When two species compete for exactly the same resources (or occupy the same niche), one is likely to be more successful. One species lives, the other is eliminated.

Resource Partitioning

Some species coexist in spite of apparent competition for the same resources.

Character displacement (niche shift)

Result of resource partitioning, certain characteristics may enable individuals to obtain resources in their partitions more successfully.

Realized/Fundamental niche

Niche that an organism occupies in the absence of competing species.

Niche Overlap

When species must compete with others for the same resources


Form of community interaction where an animal feeds on a plant or other animal

True predator

Animal that kills and eats other animals


Animal that spends most or all of its life living on another organism, obtaining nourishment from the host by feeding on tissues


Insect that lays its eggs on a host. After hatching, the eggs feed off the tissues of the host


Animal that eats plants.


Seed eaters that act like predators by totally consuming organisms


Animals that eat grasses or leaves of other plants


Animals that may eat only part of a plant but may weaken it in the process


Two species that live together in close contact during a portion of their lives


Form of symbiosis that is a relationship in which both species benefit.


Form of symbiosis where one species benefits while the second is neither helped nor harmed


Form of symbiosis where the parasite benefits while the host is harmed.

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