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Bioooooo Final


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Gross Primary Production
-total amount of carbon fixed by autotrophs in an ecosystem
-controlled by climate, nutrients, and autotroph biomass
Net primary production
-the amount of energy available to the consumers in an ecosystem
-plants need about 1/2 carbon fixed to support biosynthesis and cellular maintenance.
-NPP=GPP-carbon lost to respiration

Actual evapotranspiration (AET)
-the total amount of water that evaporates and transpires off a landscape (mL water/year)
-the transformation of an ecosystem from low nutrient levels to high nutrient levels
-usually caused by humans
-bottom up changes in community

trophic dynamics
-the transfer of energy from one part of the ecosystem to another
-all heterotrophs rely on energy from autotrophs
ecological efficiency
-the percentage of energy at one trophic level transferred to another
consumption efficiency
-proportion of available biomass that is ingested
-higher trophic levels=high consumption efficiency
-example: zebras eat grass, lion eats zebra

assimilation efficiency
-proportion of ingested food that is absorbed by digestive tract (determined by quality of food)
-higher food quality as you move up trophic levels
-ex: herbivores-20-50%, carnivores-80%

production efficiency
-proportion of assimilated biomass used to produce new consumer biomass
-elements that are required for the development, maintenance, and reproduction of organisms
-different from energy in that they are not lost in transfer
nutrient cycling
-the use, transformation, movement and reuse of nutrients in ecosystems
nutrient pools
-the amount of a particular nutrient stored in a portion of the ecosystem
-nutrients move through nutrient pools
nutrient flux
-the movement of nutrients between nutrient pools in an ecosystem
nutrient sink
-a part of the biosphere where a nutrient is absorbed faster than it is released
-ex: phosphorus settling at the bottom of a lake
nutrient source
-a part of the biosphere where a nutrient is released faster than it is absorbed
-ex: burning fossil fuels
mechanical weathering
-physical breakdown of rocks
-ex: water erosion
chemical weathering
-release of soluble forms of nutrients through chemical reactions
-ex: carbonic acid releasing calcium
nitrogen fixation
-nitrogen fixers include cyanobacteria, some soil bacteria, bacteria associated with alder, bacteria associated with legumes
-can also be fixed by lightening
-haber bosch process artificially fixes N

-conversion from organic to inorganic compounds
-often occurs during decomposition
-influenced by temp, moisture, and chemical composition of environment

-displacement and mixing of sediment particles and solutes by living organisms
-change in communities following creation of new substrate or a disturbance
-any process that destroys or removes biomass
-can cause marked changes in a community or population
-ex:forest fires

pioneer community
-the first community to be established after a disturbance
climax community
-communities that occur in late succession and generally have stable populations
alternative stable states
-different community development scenarios are possible at the same location under similar environmental conditions
-the inability to shift back to an original community type, even when conditions are restored
-the study of ecological structure and process at large geographic scales
continental islands
-form when land breaks away from continents
volcanic islands
-form when new land is created from volcanic activity
-an area that is spatially heterogenous either in its elements or how those elements are arranged
landscape ecology
-the study of the relationship between spatial pattern and ecological processes over a range of scales
landscape structure
-the size, shape, composition, number and position of landscape elements within a landscape
-can be analogous to studying anatomy of organisms
-continuous area of one habitat type
-the background mosaic
-often unsuitable
-transition zone from one ecosystem type to another
ecosystem engineers
-organisms that change their physical environment enough to influence structure of landscapes, ecosystems or communities
habitat fragmentation
-refers to human caused changes to a landscape that reduce the amount of continuous habitat
-single large or several small
-connect habitat patches
-aid dispersal
applied ecology
-using theoretical principles and concepts to manage real populations, communities, ecosystems, etc
-often falls under discipline of conservation biology
conservation biology
-scientific discipline that studies threats to biodiversity and how to mitigate them
-current temperature, humidity, precipitation, wind, etc
-long term description of weather in a region measured over years and decades
precautionary principle
-the principle when information about a potential risk is incomplete, decisions about future policies should be based on a preference for avoiding unnecessary environmental or health risks
Key point 1
-organisms are adapted to their environments
key point 2
-the principle of allocation
key point 3
-populations and communities are regulated by the environment and by species interactions
key point 4
-organisms never do just one thing (they are connected to everything around them)
key point 5
-ecological processes follow principles of physics and mathematics
key point 6
-humans alter ecological processes
mean residence time (actual)***
-average time a molecule of an element spends in a pool before leaving a pool
-lower in the tropics

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