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Ch. 3 - The Biosphere

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Greg Evans

on 25 September 2013

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Transcript of Ch. 3 - The Biosphere

photo credit Nasa / Goddard Space Flight Center / Reto Stöckli
Chapter 3
The Biosphere
3.1 - What is Ecology?
Interactions and Interdependence
Ecology is the study of interactions between organisms and between organisms and their environment
The term ecology was coined by Ernst Haeckel.
oikos = house
The biosphere contains portions of the planet in which all life exists, ie. land, water, air, & atmosphere.
Interactions in the biosphere create a "web" of interdependence between organisms and the enivronment
Levels of Organization
groups of individuals that belong to the same species and live in the same area
different populations that live in a defined area
all organisms that live in a particular place and their physical environment
group of ecosystems that have the same climate and similar dominant communities
Ecological Methods
1st step in asking ecological questions.
used to test hypotheses
models are made to help understand complex phenomena
At the core of every organism's interaction with the environment is its need for energy.
3.2 - Energy Flow
Sunlight is the main source of energy for life on earth.
Some organisms rely on energy stored in inorganic chemical compounds
- use energy from their
environment to make food
Energy from the Sun
Plants are the main autotrophs on land, algae are the main autotrophs in the aquatic ecosystems.
Life without Light
Chemosynthesis - the use of chemical energy by organisms to produce carbohydrates
Heterotrophs aka consumers are organisms that on other organisms for food and energy.
Types of Heterotrophs:
Feeding Relationships
Energy flows through an ecosystem in one direction
The other one direction!
Food Chains are a series of steps in which organisms transfer energy by being eaten or eating.
Food Webs
A food web links all the food chains in an ecosystem together.
Each step in a food chain or food web is a trophic level.
Ecological Pyramids
An ecological pryamid is a diagram that shows the relative amounts of energy or matter within each trophic level.
Full transcript