Unit 1 - Natural Environments - Key terms (Ecosystems / Rainforests / Deserts) (AQA GCSE)
Some key terms and definitions for key concepts in the Natural Environments (Ecosystems / Rainforests / Deserts) section of Unit 1.
Terms in this set (34)
A natural system of interdependent and interrelated living and non-living components
These are living features of an ecosystem - e.g. plants, fish and animals
These are non-living features, environmental factors - including temperature, rainfall, soil, water, temperature, light, soil and rock
In an ecosystems these are plants and trees - those that can use sunlight to produce their own food.
These are those that eat other plants and organisms to get energy (so these will eat producers or other consumers)
These will break down plant and animal matter releasing nutrients back into the soil e.g. fungi and bacteria
The transfer of nutrients within an ecosystem - i.e. the nutrients released by decomposers return to the soil and are taken back up by plants, which in turn are eaten by consumers. When the plants or consumers die, the nutrients are once again returned to the soil to be taken back up again.
Plant eating animals
Animals which feed on other animals
These eat plants and other animals.
The exchange of energy in an ecosystem - who eats who
This shows how larger groups of organisms are interconnected
How a change in one part of an ecosystem can have a knock-on impact on other parts of the ecosystem.
Large-scale, global ecosystems with similar climate, vegetation etc. e.g. Tundra, Rainforest, Desert etc.
Heavily leached, infertile soils found in rainforests
Dead plant material found on the ground surface
Large roots at the base of a rainforest tree, helping to support tall trees and rapidly take up nutrients.
Vines that grow up trees to get towards the sunlight
The variety of living organisms
Funnel shaped ends of leaves found in the rainforest to funnel off excess water.
Crops produced solely for use by farmers and their families
A sustainable form of travel which minimises impact on the environment whilst providing benefits for the locals.
Crops produced on a large scale for profit.
Where water power is used to create electricity.
Those people that have always lived in an area.
Sustainable Rainforest Management
Using rainforest goods and services to benefit both people now and future generations.
Only cutting trees when they are fully grown - letting younger trees mature and protect ground
Combining crops and trees
An area found between 20-30o north or south of the equator receiving less than 250mm of rainfall resulting in extreme aridity
One which is easily disturbed
Excessive grazing causing damage to grassland.
Where ground is constantly used for growing crops causing the soil to become exhausted of nutrients and infertile.
The process whereby land which once was fertile is gradually turned into a desert.
Small scale and involves people using methods and materials that are appropriate to their level of development
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