Population Ecology - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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Population Ecology. Predator-Prey Population Dynamics. Let’s look at the relationship between fox and rabbit populations. Fox-Rabbit Populations. As the fox ( predator ) population increases, the rabbit ( prey ) population decreases. Fox-Rabbit Populations.

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Population Ecology

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Population ecology l.jpg

Population Ecology

Predator prey population dynamics l.jpg

Predator-Prey Population Dynamics

Let’s look at the relationship between fox and rabbit populations.

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As the fox (predator) population increases, the rabbit (prey) population decreases.

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Fewer rabbits leads to fewer foxes.

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But, fewer foxes leads to an increase in the rabbit population, starting the cycle all over again.

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Another example can be seen in the relationship between lynx and hare populations.

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Look for the relationship between the wolf and moose populations.

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Regardless of the species, predator-prey populations are always linked.

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So What?

The number of organisms in any population cannot increase forever.

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Human Population History

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Human PopulationHistory

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Human PopulationSince 1000 AD

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Human PopulationIncreaseby Year

<1 billionfor 100,000+ years1 billion ~18502 billion~19303 billion~19604 billion~19755 billion~19896 billion~20006.7 billiontoday10 billion~2050

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Human Population Since 1750

Millions of People


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Human Population Since 1950

Millions of People


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Earth from Space at Night

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Unsustainable Growth

The number of organisms in any population cannot increase forever.

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But Humans Don’t Have Predators!

True. We’re on top of the food chain.

So what’s our “prey”?

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What Humans Depend On

What do we depend on to survive?

What could cause our population to decline?

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Human Impacts on Ecosystems

And … since our population is increasing at a breakneck pace, what impacts do we have on ecosystems around the world?

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