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This 3 page Class Notes was uploaded by Kristen Walsh on Friday April 10, 2015. The Class Notes belongs to BSC 108 at University of Alabama - Tuscaloosa taught by Dr. Yates in Spring2015. Since its upload, it has received 153 views.
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Date Created: 04/10/15
Chapter 18 An introduction to Ecology and the Biosphere Ecology the scientific study of the interactions between organisms and their environments 0 Environment can be divided into two major components The abiotic component the nonliving chemical and physical factors in an environment The biotic component 0 Ecology can be divided into four increasingly complex levels Organismal ecology concerned with evolutionary adaptations that enable individual organisms to meet the challenges posed by their abiotic environments Population ecology concerned with populations groups of individuals of the same species living in the same area concentrating mainly on factors that affect population density and growth Community ecology concerned with communities assemblages of populations of different species and focuses on how interactions between species affect community structure and organization Ecosystem ecology concerned with ecosystems which include all the abiotic factors in addition to the community of species in a certain area and focuses on energy flow and the cycling of chemicals among the various abiotic and biotic factors 0 The biosphere is the global ecosystem Habitats specific environments in which organisms live and reveal patchiness on an even smaller scale 0 Energy Source Solar energy powers almost all ecosystems Availability of sunlight affects aquatic and terrestrial environments There is life deep in ocean Temperature Environmental temperature is an important abiotic factor because of its affect on metabolism 0 VVater Aquatic organisms may face problems with water balance For terrestrial organisms the main water problem is drying out 0 Wind Some organisms depend on nutrients blown to them by wind Organisms such as plants depend on wind to disperse pollen and seeds Can also affect the pattern of a plants growth Rocks and Soil Soil variation contributes to the patchiness we see in terrestrial landscapes Among vertebrates Birds and mammals can tolerate the greatest temperature extremes because they are endotherms warm blooded Reptiles are more limited in the climates they can tolerate because they are cold blooded Anatomical Responses many organisms respond to environmental challenge with some type of change in body shape or anatomy Behavioral Responses in contrast to plants most animals can respond to an unfavorable change in the environment by moving to a new location Biomes a major terrestrial or aquatic life zone characterized by vegetation type in terrestrial biomes or the physical environments in aquatic biomes Aquatic Biomes 75 of earths surface 0 Determined by their salinity and other physical factors 0 Freshwater biomes lakes streams rivers wetlands A disproportionate share of biodiversity 6 of all species Used for drinking water crop irrigation sanitation and industry Standing water lakes ponds Flowing water rivers streams 0 Marine biomes oceans intertidal zones coral reefs and estuaries Terrestrial Biomes o Primarily determined by climate especially temperature and rainfall o Altitude effects vegetation and animal distribution 0 Proximity to large bodies of water and the presence of landforms such as mountain ranges also affect climate 0 Types Tropical forest savanna desert chaparral temperate grassland temperate broadleaf forest coniferous forest arctic tundra high mountains polar ice The water cycle all parts of the biosphere are linked by the global water cycle and by nutrient cycles Sustainability the goal of developing managing and conserving Earths resources to meet the needs of people today without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs
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