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What is an Ecosystem?
- All the interacting parts of a biological community and its environment.
- i.e.- Aquarium
What is a Sustainable Ecosystem?
- An ecosystem that is capable of withstanding pressure and giving support to a variety of organisms.
- i.e.- Ocean, Tropical Rainforest, Dessert.
What is Biotic?
- The term for the living parts of an ecosystem.
- i.e.- The plants and/or animals in the ecosystem.
What is Abiotic?
- The term for the non-living parts of an ecosystem.i.e.- Rocks, dirt, water, etc.
What is the Lithosphere?
- Th hard part of Earth's surface. (Yellow)
What is the Hydrosphere?
- All the water found on Earth. (Dark Blue)
- i.e.- Lakes, oceans, ground water, etc.
What is the Atmosphere?
- The layer of gases above Earth's surface. (Light Blue)
- i.e.- air, greenhouse gases, etc.
What is the Biosphere?
- The regions of Earth where living organisms exist.
- i.e.- Rainforest, ocean, etc.
What is Nutrients?
- Chemicals that are essential to living things and are recycled through the Earth.
- i.e.- Fat, protein, vitamins.
What is Eutrophication?
A process in which nutrient levels in aquatic ecosystems increase, leading to an increase in the populations of primary producers.
What is Photosynthesis?
- A process that changes solar energy into chemical energy.
- (equation below is the equation for photosynthesis. Note: Water and light must be present for photosynthesis to happen)
What is a Trophic Level?
- A catergory of organisms that is defined by how the organisms gain their energy.
- i.e.- Tertiary consumers, producers, etc. (see full list in photo)
What is Biomass?
The total mass of living organisms in a defined group or area.
What is Trophic Efficiency?
- A measure of the amount of energy or biomass transferred from one trophic level to the next.
- i.e.- see diagram below
What is Bioaccumulation?
A process in an organism ingests materials, especially toxins, faster than it eliminates them.
What is Biomagnification?
- A process in which the concentration of injected toxins increases from one trophic level to the next.
- i.e.- see diagram below
What is Cellular Respiration?
A process that releases energy from organic molecules, especially carbohydrates, in the presence of oxygen.
What is Fermentation?
A process that releases energy from organic molecules, especially carbohydrates, in the absence of oxygen.
What are Greenhouse Gases?
Atmospheic gases that prevent heat from leaving the atmosphere, thus increasing the temperature of the atmosphere.
What is the Greenhouse Effect?
The warming of the Earth as a result of greenhouse gases, which trap some of the energy that would otherwise leave Earth.
What is Acid Precipitation?
Rain, snow, or fog that is unnatually acidic due to gases in the atmosphere that react with water to form acids.
What is population?
All the individuals ofa species that occupy a particular geographic area at a certain time.
What is exponential growth?
- Accelerating growth that produces a j-shaped curve when the population is graphed against time.
What is limiting factors?
A factor that limits the growth, distribution, or amount of population in an ecosystem.
What is carrying capacity?
- The size of a population that can be supported indefinitely by the available resources and services of an ecosystem.
What is ecological niche?
- The way in which an organism occupies a position in an ecosystem, including all the necessary biotic and abiotic factors.
- i.e.- ocean, tropical rainsforest, front lawn
What is a preditor?
- An organism that kills and consumes other organisms.
- i.e.- crocidile, stork, fisheagle
What is prey?
- An organism that is eaten as food by the predator.
- i.e.- hare, small fish
What is mutualism?
- A symbiotic relationship between two species in which both species benifit from the relationship.
- i.e.- soft-shell turtle and a crocidile
What is a parasite?
- An organism whose nicche is dependant on a close association with a larger host organism.
- i.e.- white tailed deer and a brainworm
What is competition?
- When two or more organisms compete for the same resource, in the same location at the same time.
- i.e.- lizard and a crocidile
What is sustainable use?
Use that does not lead to long term depleation of a resource or affect the diversity of the ecosystem from which the resource is obtained.
What is doubling time?
The period of time that is required for a population to double in size
What is an ecological footprint?
A measure of the impact of an individual or a population on the environment in terms of energy consumption, land use, and waste production.
What is unsustainable?
A pattern of activity that leads to a decline in the function of an ecosystem.
What is sustainability?
Use of the Earth's resources, including land and water, at levels that can continue forever.
What are ecosystem services?
The benifits experienced by organisms, including humans, that are provided by sustainable ecosystems.
What is desertification?
The change of non-desert land into desert, which may result from climate change or from unsustanable farming or water use.
What is ecotourism?
A form of tourism that is sensitive to health of an ecosystem and involves recreational activities provided by sustainable ecosystems.
What is Biodiversity
The number and variety of organisms found in a specific habitat
What is Protect
To legally guard from harm a species that is listed as endangered, threatened, or of special concern
What is a Biodiversity Hotspot
- A place where there is an exceptionally large number of species in a relatively small area
- i.e.- tropical areas
What is a Community
All the populations of the different species that interact in a specific area or ecosystem
What is a Dominant Species
- A species that is so abundant that it has the biggest biomass of any community mmembers
- i.e - primary producers (needed in ecosystems)
What is a Keystone Species
- A species that can greatly affect population numbers and the health of an eecosystems.
- i.e. - classic keystone species would be small preditors preventing herbivores eliminating plants.
What is Captive Breeding
- The breeding of rare or endangered wildlife in controlled settings to increase ppopulations
- i.e. - seahorses are captive bred to increase population.
What is an Ecosystem Engineer
- A species that causes such a dramatic changes to landscapes that it creates a new eecosystems
- i.e. - beavers (streams into aquatic ecosystems)
What is Succession
The series of changes in ecosystems that occurs over time following a disturbance
What is Habitat Loss
The destruction of habitats, which usually results from human activities
What is Deforestation
The practice of clearing forests for logging or other human uses, and never replanting them
What is an Alien Species
- A species that is accidentally or deliberately introduced to a new location, usually as a result of human activity
- i.e. - zebra mussels
What is an Invasive Species
- A species that can take over the habitat of native species or invade their bodies
- i.e. - kudzu (refer to picture below)
What is Overexploitation
The use or extraction if resources until it is depleted
What is Extinction
The death of all individuals of a species
What is a Biodiversity Crisis
The current accelerated rate of extinctions on Earth
What is Restoration Ecology
The renewal of degraded or destroyed ecosystems through active human intervention
What is Reforestation
The regrowth of a forest, either through the planting of seeds or trees in an area where a forest was cut down
What is Biocontrol
The use of a species to control the population growth or spread of an undesirable species
What is Bioremediation
The use of living organisms to clean up contaminated areas naturally.
What is Bioaugmentation
The use of organisms to add essential nutrients to depleted soils