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First Semester


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Emergent Property
importance of structural arrangement and applies to inanimate material as well as to life
a group of individuals of one species that live in a particular geographic area
all the organisms that inhabit a particular area; an assemblage of populations of different species living close enough together for potential interaction
a level of ecological study that includes all the organisms in a given area as well as the abiotic factors with which they interact; a community and its physical environment
one of the world's major ecosystems, classified according to the predominant vegetation and characterized by adaptations of organisms to that particular environment
the branch of biology concerned with naming and classifying the diverse forms of life
all the changes that have transformed life on earth from its earliest beginnings to the diversity that characterizes it today
Natural Selection
differential success in the reproduction of different phenotypes resulting from the interaction of organisms with their environment
Abiotic Components
nonliving chemical and physical factors in the environment
Abyssal Zone
the very deep benthic communities near the bottom of the ocean. This region is characterized by continuous cold, extremely high water pressure, low nutrients, and near or total absence of light
Aphotic Zone
the part of the ocean beneath the photic zone, where light does not penetrate sufficiently for photosynthesis to occur
Benthic Zone
the bottom surfaces of aquatic environments
the communites of organisms living in the benthic zone of an aquatic biome
the entire portion of Earth inhabited by life; the sum of all the planet's ecosystems
Biotic Components
all the organisms that are part of the environment
the uppermost layer of vegetation in a terrestrial biome
the prevailing weather conditions at a locality
Coral Reefs
warm water, tropical, ecosystems dominated by the hard skeletal structures secreted primarily by the resident cnidarians
dead organic matter
the area where a freshwater stream or river merges with the ocean
Photic Zone
the narrow top slice of the ocean, where light permeates sufficiently for photosynthesis to occur
a narrow stratum of rapid temperature change in the ocean and in many temperate-zone lakes
Littoral Zone
the shallow, well-lit waters of a lake close to shore
Limnetic Zone
the well-lit, open surface waters of a lake farther from shore
Profundal Zone
the deep aphotic region of a lake
Oligotrophic Lake
a nutrient-poor, clear, deep lake with minimum phytoplankton
pertaining to a highly productive lake, having a high rate of biological productivity supported by a high rate of nutrient cycling
lakes with moderate amounts of nutrients and phytoplankton productivity intermediate to oligotrophic and eutrophic systems
an ecosystem intermediate between an aquatic one and a terrestrial one. Wetland soil is saturated with water permanently or periodically
Intertidal Zone
the shallow zone of the ocean where land meets water
Neritic Zone
the shallow regions of the ocean overlying the continental shelves
Oceanic Zone
the region of water lying over deep areas beyond the continental shelf
Pelagic Zone
the area of the ocean past the continental shelf, with areas of open water often reaching to very great depths
a permanently frozen stratum below the arctic tundra
what an animal does and how it does it
the study of animal behavior in natural conditions
Fixed Action Pattern (FAP)
a sequence of behavioral acts that is essentially unchangeable and usually carried to completion once initiated
Sign Stimulus
an external sensory stimulus that triggers a fixed action pattern
behavior necessary to recognize, search for, capture, and consume food
Search Image
a set of key characteristics that will lead it to the desired object
a behavioral change resulting from experience
ongoing developmental changes in neuromuscular systems
Kin Selection
a phenomenon of inclusive fitness, used to explain altruistic behavior between related individuals
a type of learned behavior with a significant innate component, acquired during a limited critical period
Critical Peroid
a limited phase in an individual animal's development when learning of particular behaviors can take place
Associative Learning
the acquired ability to associate one stimulus with another; also called classical conditioning
Classical Conditioning
a type of associative learning; the association of a normally irrelevant stimulus with a fixed behavioral response
Operant Conditioning
a type of associative learning in which an animal learns to associate one of its own behaviors with a reward or punishment and then tends to repeat or avoid that behavior. Also called trial-and-error learning
behavior with no apparent external goal but involves movements closely associated with goal-directed behaviors
the ability of an animal's nervous system to perceive, store, process, and use information obtained by its sensory receptors
Cognitive Ethology
the scientific study of cognition; the study of the connection between data processing by nervous systems and animal behavior
Cognitive Map
a representation within the nervous system of spatial relations among objects in an animal's environment
a very simple type of learning that involves a loss of responsiveness to stimuli that convey little or no information
Reciprocal Altruism
altruistic behavior between unrelated individuals; whereby the current altruistic individual benefits in the future when the current beneficiary reciprocates
regular movement over relatively long distances
Social Behavior
any kind of interaction between two or more animals, usually of the same species
the study of social behavior based on evolutionary theory
Agonistic Behavior
a type of behavior involving a contest of some kind that determines which competitor gains access to some resource, such as food or mates
a type of symbolic activity
Dominance Hierarchy
a linear "pecking order" of animals, where position dictates characteristic social behaviors
an area that an individual or individuals defend and from which other members of the same species are usually excluded
Parental Investment
the time and resources an individual must spend to produce and nurture offspring
a change in activity or turning rate in response to a stimulus
movement toward or away from a stimulus
a type of relationship in which one male mates with just one female
a type of relationship in which an individual of one sex mates with several of the other
a polygamous mating system involving one male and many females
a polygamous mating system involving one female and many males
a small, volatile chemical signal that functions in communication between animals and acts much like a hormone in influencing physiology and behavior
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 increase the production of their offspring
Coefficient of Relatedness
the probability that a particular gene present in one individual will also be inherited from a common parent or ancestor in a second individual
a small area in which males display
a type of relationship in which mating occurs with no strong pair-bonds or lasting relationships
Carrying Capacity
the maximum population size that can be supported by the available resources, symbolized as K
describing a dispersion pattern in which individuals are aggregate in patches
a group of individuals of the same age, from birth until all are dead
the study of statistics relating to births and deaths in populations
Density Dependent
any characteristic that varies according to an increase in population density
Density-Independent Factor
any factor that affects a population by the same percentage, regardless of density
the number of individuals per unit area or volume
the pattern of spacing among individuals within geographic population boundaries
a protein that must be present in the intracellular environment (culture medium or animal body) for the growth and normal devleopment of certain types of cells
Intrinsic Rate of Increase
The difference between the number of births and the number of deaths, symbolized as rmax; the maximum population growth rate
the concept that in certain (K-selected) populations, life history is centered around producing relatively few offspring that have a good chance of survival
Life History
the series of events from birth through reproduction and death
Life Table
a table of data summarizing mortality in a population
Logistic Population Growth
a model describing population growth that levels off as population size approaches carrying capacity
Negative Feedback
a primary mechanism of homeostasis, whereby a change in a physiological variable that is being monitored triggers a response that counteracts the initial fluctuation
the concept that in certain (r-selected) populations, a high reproductive rate is the chief determinant of life history
describing a dispersion pattern in which individuals are spaced in a patternless, unpredictable way
Survivorship Curve
a plot of the number of members of a cohort that are still alive at each age; one way to represent age-specific mortality
describing a dispersion pattern in which individuals are evenly distributed
Zero Population Growth
a period of stability in population size when the per capita birth rates and death rates are equal
Batesian Mimicry
a type of mimicry in which a harmless species looks like a species that is poisonous or otherwise harmful to predators
a symbiotic relationship in which the symbiont benefits but the host is neither helped nor harmed
Competitive Exclusion Principle
the concept that when populations of two similar species compete for the same limited resources, one population will use the resources more efficiently and have a reproductive advantage that will eventually lead to the elimination of the other population
Cryptic Coloration
camouflage, making potential prey difficult to spot against its background
Ecological Niche
the sum total of an organism's utilization of the biotic and abiotic resources of its environment
Ecological Succession
transition in the species composition of a biological community, often following ecological disturbance of the community; the establishment of a biological community in an area virtually barren of life
organisms that live within their host
organisms that live within their host
Food Chain
the pathway along which food is transferred from trophic level to trophic level, beginning with producers
occurs when animals eat plants
Interspecific Competition
populations of two or more species in a community that rely on similar limiting resources
a preditory species that helps maintain species richness in a community by reducing the density of populations of the best competitors so that populaions of less conpetitive species are maintained
Mullerian Mimicry
a mutual mimicry by two unpalatable species
a symbiotic relationship in which both the host and the symbiotic benefit
a symbiotic relationship in which the symbiotic (parasite) benefits at the expense of the host by living either within the host or outside the host
predator eats prey
Primary Succession
a type of ecological succession that occurs in an area where there were originally no organisms
Resource Partitioning
the division of environmental resources by coexisting species populations such that the niche of each species differs by one or more significant factors from the niches of all coexisting species populations
Secondary Succession
a type of succession that occurs where an existing community has been severely cleared by some disturbance
Species Richness
the number of species in a biological community
Trophic Level
the division of species in an ecosystem on the basis of their main nutritional source
Tropical Rainforest
Warm, moist belt by equator; most diverse ecosystem; large scale human destruction of these forests endangers many species and may alter world climate
drier tropical areas and some nontropical area; grassland with scattered trees; grazing by large herbivores and fire maintain it
driest biome; misues of surrounding land is contributing to the growth of some deserts
shrubland with cool rainy winters and dry, hot summers, when fires often occur
Temperate Grassland
found in the interior of the continents; winters are cold; drought, fire and grazing animals prevent trees from growing; farms have replaced most grassland
Temperate Deciduous Forest
dense strands of deciduous trees; animal hibernation and bird migration
Coniferous Forest (Taiga)
extensive biome of the far north and high mount sins; short summers and long, snowy winters
treeless with extreme cold, wind, and permafrost; shrubs, grasses, mosses, lichens; lies between the taiga and permanently frozen polar regions; alpine tundra occurs above the treeline on high mountains
anything that takes up space and has mass
any substance that cannot be broken down to any other substance
Trace Element
an element indispensable for life but required in extremely minute amounts
the smallest unit of matter that still remains the properties of an element
an electrically neutral particle (a particle having no electrical charge), found in the nucleus of an atom
a subatomic particle with a single positive electrical charge, found in the nucleus of an atom
a subatomic particle with a single negative charge; one or more electrons move around the nucleus of an atom
Atomic Number
the number of protons in the nucleus of an atom, unique for each element and designated by a subscript to the left of the elemental symbol
Mass Number
the sum of the number of protons and neutrons in an atom's nucleus
Atomic Weight
the total atomic mass, which is the mass in grams of one mole of the atom
one of several atomic forms of an element, each containing a different number of neutrons and thus differing in atomic mass
Radioactive Isotope
an isotope (an atomic form of a chemical element) that is unstable; the nucleus decays spontaneously, giving off detectable particles and energy
the capacity to do work (to move matter against an opposing force)
Potential Energy
the energy stored by matter as a result of its location or spatial arrangement
Energy Level
the different states of potential energy for electrons in an atom
Electron Shell
an energy level representing the distance of an electron from the nucleus of an atom
the three-demensional space where an electron is found ninty percent of the time
the bonding capacity of an atom generally equal to the number of unpaired electrons in the atom's outermost shell
Valence Electron
the electrons in the outermost electron shell
Valence Shell
the outermost energy shell of an atom, containing the valence electrons involved in the chemical reactions of that atom
Chemical Bond
an attraction between two atoms resulting from a sharing of outer-shell electrons or the presence of opposite charges on the atoms; the bonded atoms gain complete outer electron shells
Covalent Bond
a type of strong chemical bond in which two atoms share one pair of valence electrons
two or more atoms held together by covalent bonds
Structural Formula
a type of molecular notation in which the constituent atoms are joined by lines representing covalent bonds
Molecular Formula
a type of molecular notation indicating only the quantity of the constituent atoms
Double Covalent Bond
a type of covalent bond in which two atoms share two pairs of electrons; symbolized by a pair of lines between the bonded atoms
the attraction of an atom for the electrons of a covalent bond
Nonpolar Covalent Bond
a type of covalent bond in which electrons are shared equally between two atoms of similar electronegativity
Polar Covalent Bond
a type of covalent bond between atoms that differ in electronegativity; the shared electrons are pulled closer to the more electronegative atom, making it slightly negative and the other atom slightly positive
an atom that has gained or lost electrons, thus acquiring a charge
an ion with a positive charge, produced by the loss of one or more electrons
a negatively charged ion
Ionic Bond
a chemical bond resulting from the attraction between oppositely charged ions
Hydrogen Bond
a type of weak chemical bond formed when the slightly positive hydrogen atom of a polar covalent bond in one molecule is attracted to the slightly negative atom of a polar covalent bond in another molecule
starting materials
ending materials
Chemical Equilibrium
the point at which the reactions offset one another exactly

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