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Biology from Chapter 3: Ecology


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the scientific study of interactions among organisms and between organisms and their environments
part of Earth in which life exists including lands, water, and air or atmoshphere
a group of similar organisms that can breed and produce fertile offspring
group of individuals of the same species that live in the same area
assemblage of different populations that live together in a defined area
collection of all the organisms that live in a particular place, together with their nonliving enviornment
group of ecosystems that have the same climate and similar dominant communities
organism that can capture energy from sunlight or chemicals and use it to produce its own food from inorganic compounds; also called a producer
organism that can capture energy from sunlight or chemicals and use it to produce its own food from inorganic compounds; also called an autotroph
process by which plants and some other organisms use light energy to power chemical reactions that convert water and carbon dioxide into oxygen and high-energy carbs like glucose
process by which some organisms use chemical energy to produce carbs
organism that obtains energy from the foods it consumes; also called a consumer
organism that obtains energy from the foods it consumes; also called a heterotroph
organism that obtains energy by eating only plants
organism that obtains energy by eating animals
organism that obtains energy by eating both plants and animals
organism that feeds on plant and animal remains and other dead matter
organism that breaks down and obtains energy from dead organic matter
food chain
series of steps in an ecosystem in which organisms transfer energy by eating and being eaten
food web
network of complex interactions formed by the feeding relationships among the various organisms in an ecosystem
trophic level
step in a food chain or food web
ecological pyramid
diagram that shows the relative amounts of energy or matter within each trophic level in a food chain
total amount of living tissue within a given trophic level
condtion of Earth's atmosphere at a particular time and place
average, year-after-year conditions of temperature and precipitation in a particular region
greenhouse effect
natural situation in which heat is retained in Earth's atmosphere by carbon dioxide, methane, water vapor, and other gases
polar zone
cold climate zone where the sun's rays strike Earth's at a very low angle
temperate zone
moderate climate zone between the polar zones and the tropics
tropical zone
warm climate zone that receives direct or nearly direct sunlight year round
biotic factor
biologic influence on organisms within an ecosystem
abiotc factor
physical, or nonliving, factor that shapes an ecosystem
the area where an organism lives, including the biotic and abiotic factors that affect the organism
full range of physical and biological conditions in which an organism lives and the way in which the organism uses those conditions
any necessity of life, such as water, nutrients, light, food and space
competitive exclusion principle
ecologic rule that states no two species species can occupy the exact same niche in the same habitat at the same time
interaction in which one organism captures and feeds on another organisms
relationship in which two species live closely together
symbiotic relationship in which both species benefit from the relationship
A symbiotic relationship between two organisms of different species in which one derives some benefit while the other is unaffected
symbiotic relationship in which one organism lives in or on another organism by feeding on it
ecological succession
gradual change in living communities that follows a disturbance
primary succession
sucession that occurs on surfaces where no soil exists
pioneer species
first species to populate an area during primary succession
secondary species
succession that follows a disturbance that destroys a community without destroying the soil
climate within a small area that differs significantly from the climate of the surrounding area
dense covering formed by the leafy tops of tall rain trees
layer in a rain forest formed by shorter trees and vines
trees that sheds its leaves during a particular season each year
trees that produce seed-bearing cones and have thin leaves shaped like needles
material formed from decaying leaves and other organic matter
photic zone
well-lit upper layer of the oceans
layer of permanently frozen subsoil in the tundra
tiny, free-floating, weakly-swimming organisms that occur in aquatic enviornments
tiny animals that form part of the plankton
ecosystem in which water either covers the soil, or is present at or near the surface of the soil for at least part of the year
wetlands formed where rivers meet the ocean
particles of organic material that provide food for organisms at the base of an estuary's food web
salt marsh
temperate-zone estuary dominated by salt-tolerant grasses above the low-tide line and by seagrasses under water
mangrove swamp
coastal wetland dominated by mangroves, salt-tolerant woody plants
aphotic zone
permanently dark layer of the oceans below the photic zone
prominent horizontal banding of organisms
coastal ocean
marine zone that extends from the low-tide mark to the end of the continental shelf
kelp forest
coastal ocean community named for its dominant organism - kelp
coral reef
diverse and productive enviornment named for the coral animals that makes up its primary structure
organisms that live attached to or near the ocean floor
basic unit of all forms of life
cell theory
idea that all living things are composed of cells, cells are the basic units of structure and function in living things, and new cells are produced from existing cells
cell membrane
thin, flexible barrier around the cell
cell wall
strong layer around the cell membrane
structure within the cell that contains the genetic material and controls the cell's activity
material inside the cell membrane (excluding the nucleus)
single-celled micro-organism with no defined nucleus
cells that do contain a defined nucleus
specialized structures in a cell that perform certain cellular function
granular material visible within the nucleus; consists of DNA tightly coiled around proteins
threadlike structure within the nucleus containing the genetic info that is passed from generation of cells to the next
small, dense region within most nuclei in which the assembly of ribosomes begins
nuclear envelope
double-membrane layer that surrounds the nucleus of a cell
network of protein filaments within some cells that helps the cells maintain its shape and is involved in many forms of cell movement
hollow tubes of protein that maintains cell shape and can also serve as a "track" along which organelles are moved
long, thin fiber that functions in the movement and support of the cell
small particle in the cell on which proteins are assembled
endoplasmic reticulum (ER)
structure in which components of the cell membrane are assembled and some proteins are modified
Golgi apparatus
stack of membranes in the cell in which enzymes attach carbs and fats to proteins
cell organelle filled with enzymes needed to break down certain materials in the cell
organelle that stores materials such as water, salts, proteins and carbs
organelle found in cells of plants some other organism that uses energy from sunlight to make energy-rich food molecules by photosynthesis
organelle that releases energy from stores food molecules
lipid bilayer
double layered sheet that forms the core of all cell membranes
the mass of a solute in a given volume of a solution
the process of molecules moving from an area of higher concentration to an area of low concentration
selective permeability
a membrane that allows some materials to pass through, but not allowing others
the diffusion of water
facilitated diffusion
movement of molecule across a membrane through protein channels
active transport
the process of molecules moving from an area of low concentration to an area of high concentration
process of taking materials into a cell using in-foldings or pockets of membrane
process of engulfing large particles and taking into the cell
process of removing large amounts of materials from a cell
cell specialization
separate roles for each type of cell in a multicellular organism
group of similar cells performing a particular function
many groups of tissues working together
organ system
group of organs that work together to perform certain cellular functions
adenosine triphosphate (ATP)
one of the principal chemical compounds that livng things use to store energy
light-absorbing colored molecule
principal pigment of plants and other photosynthetic organisms; captures light energy
saclike body in chloroplasts made of photosynthetic membranes that contain photosystems
region outside the thylakoid membranes in chloroplasts
one of the carrier molecules that transfers high-energy electrons from chlorophyll to other molecules
light-dependent reactions
reactions of photosynthesis that use energy from light to produce ATP and NADPH
ATP synthase
large protein that uses energy from H+ ions to bind ADP and a phosphate group together to produce ATP
Calvin cycle
reactions of photosynthesis in which energy from ATP and NADPH is used to build high-energy compounds such as sugars

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