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Flashcards in biology chapter 14 Deck (74):
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ecology

is the study of the interactions between organisms and their environment

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abiotic

physical environment which includes climate, temperature, availability of ight and water and the local topology

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biotic

all living things which directly or indirectly influence the life of the organism including the relationships that exist between organisms

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organism

is the individual unit of an ecological system, but the organism itself is composed of smaller units.

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population

is a group of organisms of the same species living together in a given location

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species

is any group of similar organisms that are capable of reproducing

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community

consists of populations of different plants and animal species interacting with each other in a given environment

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ecosystem

encompasses the interaction between living biotic communities and the non living environment

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biosphere

includes all portions of the planet which support life-- the atmosphere, the lithosphere (rock and soil surface) and the hydrosphere (the oceans)

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water

is the major component of the internal environment of all living things. May be readily available or the organism may possess adaptations for storage and conservation of water

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temperature

must be maintained at an optimal level

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sunlight

is the ultimate source of energy for all organisms

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photic zone

the top layer through which light can penetrate & where all aquatic photosynthetic activity takes place

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aphotic zone

only animal life and other life that does not require photosynthesis exist

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substratum

determines the nature of plant and animal life in the soil. Soil is affected by acidity, texture, minerals, and humus

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texture

determine the water holding capacity of the soil

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loams

contain high percentages of each type of soil

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minerals

affect the type of vegetation that can be supported

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humus quantity

determined by the amount of decaying plant and animal life in the soil

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niche

defines the functional role of an organism in its ecosystem

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habitat

is the physical place where an organism lives

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extinction

one species may be competitively superior to the other and drive the second

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autotrophs

are organisms that manufacture their own food

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heterotrophs

cannot synthesize their own food and must depend upon autotrophs or other heterotrophs in the ecosystem to obtain food and energy

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herbivores

are animals that consume only plants or plant foods

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symbiotic bacteria

capable of digesting cellulose inhabit the digestive tracts of herbivores and allow the breakdown and utilization of cellulose

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carnivores

are animals which only eat other animals. Possess pointed teeth and fang like canine teeth for tearing flesh. They have shorter digestive tracts due to the easier digestibility of animal food

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omnivores

are animals which eat both plants and animals

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integrated system

which are dependent upon one another for survival

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obligatory

one or both organisms cannot survive without the other

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commensalism

one organism is benefited by the association and the other is not affected. The host neither discourages nor fosters the relationship

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mutualism

a symbiotic relationship from which both organisms derive some benefit

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parasitism

benefits at the expense of the host. Flourishes among organisms such as bacteria, fungi, and animals

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ectoparasites

some parasites cling to the exterior surface of the host using suckers or clamps

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endoparasites

live within the host

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predators

are free living organisms which feed on other living organisms

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saprophytism

include those protists and fungi that decompose (digest) dead organic matter externally and absorb the nutrients; they constitute a vital link in the cycling of material within the ecosystem

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scavengers

are animals which consume dead animals. Require no adaptations for hunting and killing their prey

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interspecific

relations between species

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osmoregulation

animals have developed many adaptations for maintaining their internal osmolarity and conserving water

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salt water fish

live in a hyperosmotic environment which causes them to lose water and take in salt. They are constantly in danger of dehydration and must compensate by constant drinking and active excretion of salt across their gills

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freshwater fish

live in a hypoosmotic environment which causes intake of excess water and excessive salt loss. These fish correct this condition by seldom drinking, absorbing salts through the gills and excreting dilute urine

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poikilothermic

cold blooded and most of their heat escapes to the environment

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homeothermic

are warm blooded.

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producers

they utilize the energy of the sun and simple raw materials (carbon dioxide, water, minerals) to manufacture carbohydrates, proteins and lipids. Always form the initial step in any food chain

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primary consumers

are animals which consume green plants (herbivores)

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secondary consumers

are animals that consume the primary consumer (carnivores)

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tertiary consumers

these are animls that feed on secondary consumers

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decomposers

include saprophytic organisms and organisms of decay (which include bacteria and fungi).

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pyramid of energy

each member of a food chain utilizes some of the energy it obtains from its food for its own metabolism (life functions) and loses some additional energy in the form of heat

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pyramid of mass

since organisms at the upper levels of the food chain derive their food energy from organisms at lower levels, and since energy is lost from one level to the next, each level can support a successively smaller biomass

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pyramid of numbers

consumer organisms that are higher in the food chain are usually larger and heavier than those further down. Since the lower organisms have a greater total mass, there must be a greater number of lower level organisms

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material cycles

material is cycled and recycled between organisms and their environment, passing from inorganic forms to organic forms and then back to the inorganic forms

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nitrogen cycle

since there is a finite amount of nitrogen on the earth, it is important that it be recovered and reused

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climax community

is the stable, living (biotic) part of te ecosystem described above in which populations exist in balance with each other and with the environment. They type of climax community depends upon all the abiotic factors: rainfall, soil conditions, temperatures, shade, etc.

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ecological succession

is the orderly process by which one biotic community replaces or succeeds another until a climax community is established

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sere

each community stage

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dominant species

the one that exerts control over the other species that are present

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physical factors

temperature, nature of the soil, rainfall, etc

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climax vegetation

is the vegetation that becomes dominant and stable after years of evolutionary development

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desert biome

receive less than ten inches of rain each year. Growing season in the desert is restricted to those days after rainfalls. Most desert plants conserve water actively. Desert animals live in burrows.

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grassland biome

grasslands are characterized by a low rainfall. Provide no shelter for herbivorous mammals from carnivorous predators.

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tropical rain forest biome

rain forests are "jungles" characterized by high temperatures and torrential rains. Trees grow closely together; sunlight hardly reaches the forest floor.

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temperate deciduous forest biome

have cold winters, warm summers and a moderate rainfall.

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temperate coniferous forest biome

these forests are cold, dry, and inhabited by fir, pine , and spruce trees. Much of the vegetation has evolved adaptations for water conservation such as needle-shaped leaves

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taiga biome

receive less rainfall than the temperate forests, have long cold winters, and are inhabited by a single coniferous tree-the spruce

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tundra biome

the tundra is a treeless, frozen plain found between the taiga lands and the Northern ice-sheets. There is only a very short summer and, thus, a very short growing season during which time the ground becomes wet and marshy

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polar region

the polar region is a frozen area with no vegetation and terrestrial animals. Animals that do inhabit polar regions generally live near the polar oceans

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marine biomes

contain a relatively constant amount of nutrient materials and dissolved salts

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intertidal zone

region exposed at low tides which undergoes variations in temperature and periods of dryness. Populations in the intertidal zones include algae, sponges, clams, snails, sea urchins, starfish, and crabs

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littoral zone

region on the continental shelf which contains ocean area with depths up to 600 feet and extends several hundred miles from the shores. Populations in littoral zone regions include algae, crabs, crustacea, and many different species of fish

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pelagic zone

is typical of the open seas and can be divided into photic and aphotic zones

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photic zone

the sunlit layer of the open sea extending to a depth of 250-600 feet. It contains plankton; passively drifting masses of microscopic photosynthetic and heterotrophic organisms, and nekton; active swimmers such as fish, sharks, or whales which feed on plankton and smaller fish. the chief autotroph is the diatom, an algae

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aphotic zone

the region beneath the photic zone which recieves no sunlight. There is no photosynthesis in the aphotic zone and only heterotrophs exist here. Deep sea organisms in this zone have adaptations enabling them to survive in very cold water, with high pressures, and complete darkness. the zone contains nekton and benthos (the crawling and sessile organisms). some are scavengers and some are predators. the habitat of the aphotic zone is fiercely competitive