Ecology Vocab

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Ecology Vocab
2010-10-17 12:43:14
ecology science

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  1. Ecosystems
    All the living things in a particular area and their relationship to eachother and the environment
  2. Ecology
    The study of ecosystems (living organisms and the physical environment)
  3. Ecologist
    a scientist who studies the relationship between the environment and living things
  4. Trade-off
    Consequences of your actions
  5. Observations
    A description, information that you gather using your five senses and instruments
  6. Inference
    A conclusion based on an observation or a series of observations
  7. Introduced secies
    A species that is introduced by humans to a new environment(exotic, non-native)
  8. Vertebrate
    A species or organism with a backbone
  9. Linnaeus' taxonomy
    classification of organisms, both plant and animal, based on their structural characteristics
  10. Population
    A group of individuals of a single species that live in the same place
  11. Species
    a group of organisms that can interbreed
  12. Food web
    A diagram that models the feeding relationship within an ecosystem, more complex than a food chain
  13. Consumer
    organisms that get their energy by eating food(heterotrophs)
  14. Herbivores
    Animals that eat only plants (primary consumers)
  15. Carnivore
    An animal that eats other animals
  16. Omnivore
    An animal that eats both plants and meat
  17. Population fluxuation
    Population increase and decrease due to limiting factors (such as number of prey available, number of predators, space, etc)
  18. Producer
    Organisms that use the sun’s light energy to produce their own food through the process of photosynthesis
  19. Decomposer
    An organism that eats dead organisms and waste from living organisms (nematodes, bacteria, worms, and fungi)
  20. Independent variable
    The variable that causes the dependent variable to change (i.e time, temperature)
  21. Dependent variable
    The variable you are trying to predict or the effect of the independent variable
  22. Biodiversity
    The number of species found in a given habitat or environment
  23. Endotherm
    Warm-blooded organism, body temerature regulated from within
  24. Ectotherm
    Cold-blooded organism- body temperature regulated by exterior environment (ecto-outer, external)
  25. Symbiotic relationship
    Close ecological relationship between the individuals of two (or more) different species, “living together” (symbiosis)
  26. Parasitism
    A relationship between two organisms in which one organism benefits and the other is harmed, not fatal (ex. Viruses, leeches, tapeworm)
  27. Mutualism
    A relationship between two organisms in which both organisms benefit (ex. Bees get nectar from flower and flower gets pollinated)
  28. Commensalism
    A relationship between two organisms in which one organism benefits and the other is not affected much
  29. Predation
    A predator/prey relationship
  30. Plankton
    Microscopic animals and plants
  31. Phytoplankton
    Microscopic plants that are the basis of many aquatic food webs
  32. Zooplankton
    microscopic animals
  33. Photosynthesis
    The process by which plants/producers use sunlight as energy to convert carbon dioxide and water into food and oxygen
  34. Habitat
    The type of area/environment an organism normally lives in (includes biotic and abiotic factors)
  35. Biotic factors
    The "living" factors that influence a species population
  36. Abiotic factors
    "non-living" factors that influence a species' population
  37. Cell walls
    Part of a cell that provides structure and protection, helps to stiffen cells and prevent them from collapsing
  38. Chloroplasts
    Where photosynthesis tkes place, part of the plant that contains the light absorbing green pegment
  39. Vacuole
    A small cavity containing fluid which provides structure to the inside of a cell, found within the cytoplasm
  40. Cytoplasm
    A jelly-like material that surrounds the nucleus and contains most of the cell's organelles