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Main Objectives. 1). What is ecology, & what do ecologists do? 2). What are the four levels of organization of ecology? 3). What are four main factors that affect the distribution of organisms?

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Main Objectives

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Main Objectives

1). What is ecology, & what do ecologists do?

2). What are the four levels of organization of

ecology?

3). What are four main factors that affect the

distribution of organisms?

4). What is climate and what are the main factors that make it unique across the global?

5). What are 2 main variables that influence climate on regional/local scale in western US?

6). What is microclimate?


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What is Biology??


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Study of Life-from cells, organisms, populations, communities, ecosystems


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What is Ecology??


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1st defined in 1866 by Ernest Haeckel as the comprehensive science of the relationship of the organism to the environment.

Most Recent Definition: 2 parts—1) the interaction between organisms and their environment; 2) the distribution and abundance of organisms


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What is Ecology??

NEW DEFINITION COMBINED: Ecology is the study of how the distributions and abundances of populations (and species) are determined by the interactions of individual organisms with their physical and biological environment.


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What Does an

Ecologist Do??


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DESCRIBE before they EXPLAIN and make PREDICTIONS


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FOUR LEVELS OF ECOLOGICAL ORGANIZATION


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Organism

Organismal ecology is concerned with the behavioral, physiological, and morphological ways individuals interact with the environment


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Population

A population is a group of individual organisms of the same species living together in a particular geographic area

Population ecologyexamines factors that affect population size and composition


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Community

Community is a collection of all the populations of different species that inhabit a particular area.

Community ecologyexamines the interactions between populations, and how factors such as predation, competition, and disease affect community structure and organization.


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Ecosystem

Ecosystem consists of the biological community and the physical, non-living or abiotic environment—the rocks, soils, water and climate in a certain area

Ecosystem ecology examines the energy flow and cycling of chemicals among the various abiotic and biotic components.


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What factors affect the distribution of organisms?


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4 Factors


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Dispersal


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Behavior


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Biotic


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Abiotic

* most powerful are temperature and moisture

* At a certain point along this elevational gradient, the relative importance of the two limiting factors (temperature and moisture) changes

* Two additional factors—soil characteristics, traceable to the parent rocks, and topography-greatly accentuate the differences in water stress at all elevations


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Abiotic


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Why do we have different climate patterns at the Earth’s surface?

1. insolation—solar radiation that is intercepted by Earth (surface and atmosphere)

Influenced by: a) angle of incoming radiation

b) length of time exposure


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Shortwave Energy Budget


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60 degrees

Polar Front

Tropical Front

Westerlies

H

H

30 degrees

Hadley Cell

Easterlies

L

0 degrees


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60°N

30°N

Descending

dry air

absorbs

moisture

Descending

dry air

absorbs

moisture

0° (equator)

Ascending

moist air

releases

moisture

30°S

60°S

23.5°

23.5°

30°

30°

Arid

zone

Arid

zone

Tropics


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2

1

3

(1) The Gulf Stream transports heat from the tropics to northern Europe. (2) North Atlantic Deep Water formation results from strong cooling.  (3) Antarctic Bottom Water formation occurs due to sea ice production around Antarctica.


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REGIONAL/LOCAL

2 Main Variables that influence Climate on regional/local scale in western US:

  • Solar Radiation:

  • Temperature:

  • Precipitation:

  • Wind:

1). Water Bodies

2). Mountain Ranges


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Land/water influences

insolation

insolation

Less evaporation, less albedo

More evaporation, more albedo


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SOLAR RADIATION-REGIONAL/LOCAL


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Adiabatic lapse rate- change in temperature with altitude due to pressure


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Orographic Uplift

Chinook Winds

Dewpoint

Rainshadow

WINDWARD

LEEWARD


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Wind

direction

East

Pacific

Ocean

Sierra

Nevada

Coast

Range


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WIND-REGIONAL/LOCAL


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CLIMATE-MICRO SCALE


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Tropical forest

Desert

Temperate grassland

30

Temperate

broadleaf

forest

15

Annual mean temperature (°C)

Coniferous

forest

0

Arctic and

alpine

tundra

–15

400

300

200

100

Annual mean precipitation (cm)


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30°N

Tropic of

Cancer

Equator

Tropic of

Capricorn

30°S

Chaparral

Tundra

Key

Temperate grassland

High mountains

Tropical forest

Polar ice

Temperate broadleaf forest

Savanna

Coniferous forest

Desert


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Main Objectives

1). What is ecology, & what do ecologists do?

2). What are the four levels of organization of

ecology?

3). What are four main factors that affect the

distribution of organisms?

4). What is climate and what are the main factors that make it unique across the global?

5). What are 2 main variables that influence climate on regional/local scale in western US?

6). What is microclimate?


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