How can we help?

You can also find more resources in our Help Center.

239 terms

AP Bio- Ecology

Ch 50-55 in the AP Biology Textbook. For Mrs Caruk's Ecology Test.
the scientific study of the interactions between organisms and the environment
all organisms
the geographic range (of a species, population, etc.)
organismal ecology
how an organism's structure, physiology, and behavior meet challenges in the environment
a group of individuals of the same species living in a particular geographic area
population ecology
concentrates on factors that affect how many in a species live in a certain area
all of the organism of all the species that inhabit a particular area
community ecology
the whole array of interacting species in a community studied
all the abiotic factors plus the entire community of species in a certain area
ecosystem ecology
studies the energy flow and chemical cycling among both abiotic and biotic pieces
landscape ecology
arrays of ecosystems and their arrangement in a geographic region
an environmental characteristic in which a region is made up of several patches, or types of environment
the global ecosystem; the sum of all Earth's ecosystems
precautionary principle
"An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure."
the past and present distribution of individual species, in the context of evolutionary theory
biogeographic realms
Neartic (North America), Neotropical (Central and South America), Ethiopian (Southern Africa), Palearctic (Northern Africa, Middle East, Asia), Oriental (Southern Asia, Indonesia), Australian (Australia)
the movement of individuals away from centers of high population or from their area of origin
biotic factors
Living factors- predation, parasitism, disease, competition
abiotic factors
Nonliving factors- temperature, water, sunlight, wind, rocks, soil, climate
the lengths of daytime and nighttime
the prevailing weather conditions in a particular area
Factors: Temperature, Water, Sunlight, Wind
patterns on the global, regional, or local levels
very fine patterns, like in the community under a fallen log
the regions that lie between 23.5 degrees north and 23.5 degrees south, where the sunlight strikes most directly
the shortest and longest days of the year
the two days of the year when there are 12 hours of daylight and 12 hours of darkness
brings oxygenated water from lake's surface to bottom and nutrient-rich water from bottom to surface during spring and autumn
major types of ecological associations that occupy broad geographic regions of land or water
photic zone
the layer of a body of water that has sufficient light for photosynthesis
aphotic zone
the layer of a body of water where little light penetrates
benthic zone
the bottom, the substrate
organisms that inhabit the benthic zone
dead organic matter, benthos food source
strip of water that separates the warmer top parts from the frigid bottom
lakes that are nutrient poor and oxygen rich
lakes that are nutrient rich and oxygen poor
littoral zone
the part of a lake that is shallow, well-lit, and close to shore
limnetic zone
lake that is further from shore
an area covered with water for long enough to support aquatic plants
develops in a shallower, basinlike area
wetlands along riverbanks
wetlands at the coast of large lakes, seas, and oceans
a wetland that contains woody plants
a wetland with mosses and other plants
a transition between river and sea, mixing salt and fresh water
inter-tidal zones
periodically submerged and uncovered by the tides
oceanic pelagic
a vast realm of open blue water
a plot of the temperature and precipitation in a particular region
the levels of a region or biomes (ex. forest layers)
the blurred lines between biomes
ecological equivalents
similar organisms in the same biome bur different realms, caused by convergent evolution
behavioral ecology
studies how animal behavior is controlled, how it develops, evolves, and contributes to survival and reproductive success
the visible result of an animal's muscular activity- also includes some nonmuscular activity and learning
proximate questions
focus on environmental stimuli that trigger behavior, as well as the genetic, physiological, and anatomical mechanisms underlying a behavioral act
ultimate questions
focus on the evolutionary significance of a behavior
the scientific study of how animals behave
fixed action pattern (FAP)
a sequence of unlearned behaviors that is essentially unchangeable and, once initiated, is usually carried to completion
sign stimulus
an external sensory stimulus that triggers a FAP
a type of behavior that includes both learning an innate components and is generally irreversible
sensitive period
a limited phase in an animal's development that is the only time when certain behaviors can be learned
innate behavior
behavior that is developmentally fixed, under strong genetic influence
a simple change in activity or turning rate in response to a stimulus
a more of less automatic, oriented movement toward or away from some stimulus
a behavior that causes a change in another animal's behavior
the transmission of, reception of, and response to signals
chemical substances, often related to reproductive behavior, but not always
the modification of behavior based on specific experiences
a loss of responsiveness to stimuli that convey little or no information
spatial learning
a modification of behavior based on experience with the spatial structure of the environment
a location indicator
cognitive map
an internal representation/code of the spatial relationships between objects in an animal's surroundings
associative learning
the ability of many animals to associate one feature of the environment with another
classical conditioning
when an arbitrary stimulus is associated with a reward or punishment
operant conditioning
trial-and-error learning
the ability of an animal's nervous system to perceive, store, process, and use information gathered by sensory receptors
cognitive ethology
the study of animal cognition, studies connections between animal behavior and their nervous system
behavior associated with recognizing, searching for, capturing, and consuming food
optimal foraging theory
foraging behavior is a compromise between the benefits of nutrition and the costs of obtaining food
mating with no strong pair bonds or lasting relationships
mating one male, one female, longer relationship
still longer relationship, but an individual of one sex mating with several of the other sex
one male, several females
one female, several males
agonistic behavior
a ritualized contest that determines which competitor gains access to a resource (food/mates)
game theory
evaluates alternative strategies where the outcome does not depend on each individual's strategy, but also other individuals' strategies
selflessness, when an animal behaves in such a way that their individual fitness decreases but other individuals' fitness increases
inclusive fitness
the total effect an individual has on proliferating its genes by producing its own offspring and by providing aid that enables other close relatives to produce offspring
coefficient of relatedness
the probability that if two individuals share a common parent or ancestor, a particular gene present in one individual will will also be present in a second individual
Hamilton's Rule
an inequality that states in the (coefficient of relatedness)(benefit to the recipient)>(cost to the altruist), an altruistic act is worth it for the animal
kin selection
the natural selection that favors this kind of altruistic behavior by enhancing reproductive success of relatives
reciprocal altruism
when animals behave altruistically toward others who are not relatives
individuals are likely to meet again, likely to be negative consequences associated with not returning favors who have been helpful in the past
an individual treats another in the same way it was treated the last time they met
social learning
learning through observing others
a system of information transfer through the social learning or teaching that influences the behavior of individuals in a population
mate choice copying
individuals in a population copy the mate choice of others
certain behavioral characteristics exist because they are expressions of genes that have been perpetuated by natural selection
the number of individuals per unit area or volume
the pattern of spacing among individuals within the boundaries of the population
mark-recapture method
place traps, tag individuals, wait a few days/weeks (in which tagged individuals mix with population), wet out traps again, estimate due to number of marked and unmarked
influx of new individuals from other areas
the movement of individuals out of a population
clumped dispersion
individuals aggregate in patches
uniform dispersion
evenly spaced
the defense of a bounded physical space against encroachment by other individuals
random dispersion
unpredictable spacing
the study of the vital statistics of populations and how they exist over time
life tables
age-specific summaries of the survival pattern of a population
a group of individuals of the same age
survivorship curve
a plot of the proportion or numbers in a cohort still alive at each age
reproductive table
(fertility table) an age specific summary of the reproductive rates in a population
life history
made up of the traits that affect an organism's schedule of reproduction and survival
big-bang reproduction/semelparity
one shot, mature for a few years, spawn, produce thousands of eggs, then die
iteroparity/repeated reproduction
continued reproductive acts after maturity
per capita birthrate
the number of offspring produced per unit time by an average member of the population
change in population size equation
change in population size /change in time= number of births-number of deaths
per capita death rate
the number of deaths in a population per unit time
zero population growth
per capita birth and death rates are equal
exponential population growth
population increase under ideal conditions
exponential population growth equation
change in population/change in time= intrinsic rate of increase*population size
intrinsic rate of increase
the per capita rate is the maximum rate for the species
carrying capacity
(K) the maximum population size that a particular environment can support
logistic population growth
shows that per capita rate of increase declines as carrying capacity is reached
logistic population growth equation
change in population/change in time=intrinsic rate of increasepopulation((carrying capacity-population size)/carrying capacity)
selection for life history traits that are sensitive to population density, density dependent selection
selection for life history traits that maximize reproductive success, density independent selection
density independent
a term that indicates that a certain birth or death rate does not change iwth population density
density dependent
a death rate that rises when population density rises or a birth rate that falls when population density rises
population dynamics
a study that focuses on the complex interactions between biotic and abiotic factors that causes variation in population size
when a group of populations is linked
demographic transition
the movement from the first toward the second state of zero population growth
age structure
the relative number of individuals of each age
infant mortality
the number of infant deaths per 1,000 live births
life expectancy at birth
the predicted average length of life at birth
ecological footprint
summarizes the aggregate land and water area appropriated by each nation to produce all the resources it consumes and to absorb all the waste it generates
ecological capacity
the actual resource base of each country
interspecific interactions
interactions between an organism and other species in the community
interspecific competition
when species compete for a particular resource that is in short supply
competitive exclusion
strong competition leads to the local elimination of one of the two competing species
ecological niche
the sum total of a species' use of the biotic and abiotic resources in its environment
competitive exclusion principle
two species competing for the same limiting resources
fundamental niche
the niche potentially occupied by a species
realized niche
the niche a species actually occupies in a particular environment
resource partitioning
the differentiation of niches that enables similar species to coexist in a community
character displacement
the tendency for characteristics to be more divergent in sympatric populations of two species than in allopatric population of the same two species
a +/- interaction between species in which one species, the predator, kills and eats the other, the prey
cryptic coloration
aposematic coloration
warning coloration on animals with effective chemical defenses
Batesian mimicry
a harmless species mimics a harmful model
a +/- interaction when an herbivore eats parts of a plant or algae
Mullerian mimicry
two harmful species resemble each other
a +/- symbiotic interaction in which an organism, the parasite, derives nourishment from another, the host, which is harmed- typically nonlethal
parasites that live within the body of the host
parasites that feed on the external surface of the host
insects lay eggs on or in the living host
a +/- interaction, created by disease causing agents- typically lethal
an interaction between species that benefits one of the species but neither harms nor helps that other (+/0)
an interspecific interaction that affects both species
reciprocal evolutionary adaptations of two interacting species
species diversity
the variety of different kinds of organisms that make up a community
species richness
the total number of different species in the community
relative abundance
the proportion each species represents of the total individuals in the community
trophic structure
the feeding relationships between organisms
food chain
the transfer of food energy up the trophic levels
food webs
a web of interlocking food chains
energetic hypothesis
food chain length is limited by inefficiency of energy transfer along the train
dynamic stability hypothesis
long food chains are less stable that short food chains
dominant species
species in a community that are the most abundant or that collectively have the highest biomass
the total mass of all individuals in a population
invasive species
generally introduced by humans, species that take hold outside their native range
keystone species
not necessarily abundant in community, but also exert strongest control on community structure
foundation species that have positive effects on survival and reproduction of other species in the community
bottom-up model
unidirectional influence from lower to higher trophic levels
mineral nutrients- plants- herbivores- predators
top-down model
influences from higher to lower, aka the trophic cascade model
creating strategies using models such as the top-down or the bottom-up
nonequilibrium model
describes communities as constantly changing, after being buffeted by disturbances
an event that changes a community, removes organisms from it, and alters resource availability
intermediate disturbance hypothesis
states that moderate levels of disturbance can create conditions that foster greater species diversity that low or high levels of disturbance
ecological succession
species replace species that replaced another species, and then another species replaces that species
primary succession
where soil has not yet formed, the first species that inhabit an area following a severe disturbance
secondary succession
species that follow a disturbance where soil is still intact
the evaporation of water from soil and transpiration of water from plants
potential evapotranspiration
measure of energy availability, but not water availability, measured by temperature and solar radiation
species-area curve
not considering other factors, the larger the geographic area, the greater the number of species
integrated hypothesis
describes a community almost as a superorganism
individualistic hypothesis
describes a community as a chance assemblage of species together because that require similar things
rivet model
removing one or two organisms from a community wouldn't ruin it, but there is a tight association between species and collapse is influenced by all species
redundancy model
most of the species aren't tightly associated with each other, portrays a loose web of life
primary producers
the trophic level that ultimately supports all other, consists of autotrophs
primary consumers
herbivores that eat plants and other primary producers
secondary consumers
carnivores that eat the herbivores
tertiary consumers
carnivores that eat other carnivores
consumers that get energy from detritus(nonliving organic material)
primary production
the amount of energy converted to chemical energy by autotrophs during a given time period
gross primary production
(GPP) total primary production, the amount of light energy that is converted to chemical energy by photosynthesis per unit time
net primary production
(NPP) equal to the gross primary production minus the energy used by the primary producers for respiration(R), the new biomass added in a given period of time
standing crop
total biomass of photosynthetic autotrophs present at a given time
limiting nutrient
the element that must be added in order for production to increase in a particular area
sewage and fertilizer runoff adds nutrients, phytoplankton communities that were dominated by diatoms/green algae now dominated by cyanobacteria
actual evapotranspiration
the annual amount of water transpired by plants and evaporated from a landscape, determined by solar radiation, temperature, and water availability
secondary production
the amount of chemical energy in consumers' food that is converted to their own biomass during a given time period
production efficiency
the fraction of energy stored in food that is not used for respiration
production efficiency equation
production efficiency= net secondary production/assimilation of primary production
trophic efficiency
the percentage of production transferred from one trophic level to the next
pyramid of net production
diagrams the loss of energy between trophic levels
biomass pyramid
each tier represents the standing crop in each trophic level
turnover time
biomass compared to production
turnover time equation
turnover time= standing crop biomass (mg/m^2)/ production (mg/m^2/day)
pyramid of numbers
the size of each tier is proportional to the number of individual organisms present at that trophic level
green world hypothesis
terrestrial herbivores consume relatively little plant biomass because they are held in check by a variety of factors
biogeochemical cycles
nutrient cycles- involve both biotic and abiotic components
critical load
the amount of added nutrient that can be absorbed by plants without damaging ecosystem integrity
cultural eutrophication
overloads lakes, streams, rivers with inorganic material from all sorts of pollution caused by humans
acid precipitation
rain with a pH less that 5.6, hurts soil chemistry and aquatic ecosystems
biological magnification
toxins become more concentrated in successive trophic levels of a food web
greenhouse effect
how CO2 and water vapor help retain some solar heat
conservation biology
integrates ecology, physiology, molecular biology, genetics, and evolutionary biology to conserve biological diversity
restoration ecology
applies ecological principles in an effort to return degraded ecosystems to conditions as similar as possible to their natural, predegraded state
endangered species
species that are in danger of extinction throughout all or a significant portion of its range
threatened species
those that are likely to become endangered in the foreseeable future
the human sense of connection to nature and other forms of life
ecosystem services
encompasses all the processes through which natural ecosystems and the species they contain help sustain human life on Earth
major threats
habitat destruction, introduced species, overexploitation, and disruption of interaction networks
extinction vortex
small populations are prone to inbreeding and genetic drift which causes them to become even smaller, and then smaller, and they are pulled down this path continuously until the reach extinction
minimum viable population
(MVP) the minimum population size at which a species is able to sustain its numbers and survive
populations viability analysis
reasonably predicts a population's chance for survival over a particular time
effective population size
based on the breeding potential of the population
effective population size equation
(4(Number of Females)(Number of Males))/(Number of Females + Number of Males)
boundaries between ecosystems
movement corridor
a narrow strip or series of small clumps of quality habitat connecting otherwise isolated patches
biodiversity hot spot
a relatively small area with an exception concentration of endemic species and a large number of endangered and threatened species
biotic boundary
the area needed to sustain a species
legal boundary
the actual area of parks to sustain a species
zoned reserve
an extensive region of land that includes one or more areas undisturbed by humans surrounded by lands that have been changed by human activity and are used for economic gain
the use of living organisms to detoxify polluted ecosystems
biological augmentation
uses organisms to add essential materials to a degraded ecosystem
sustainable development
the long term prosperity of human societies and the ecosystems to support them