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Ecology

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  1. Ecology Biosphere Energy Pyramid Ecosystems Populations

  2. Your Habitat • Think about every organism that you encounter around school and your home. Make a list (include plant, insects, humans, pets, etc.) • Create a diagram that shows how the organisms interact with each other.

  3. Think about it • Classify: Which organisms on your list provide energy or nutrients to others? • Predict what would happen if all the plants in your diagram died. Explain your answer. • Why is it difficult to accurately predict changes in communities or organisms?

  4. Ecology • Ecology is the study of interactions of organisms within their natural habitat. • What factors affect a habitat? • Abiotic factors: non-living. Sunlight, rocks, water, etc. • Biotic factors: living interactions, food web, carbon cycle, competition, symbiosis, etc

  5. Levels of Organization • Individual Organism • Species: a group of similar organisms that can breed and produce fertile offspring • Horse + donkey = mule (non-fertile) • Population: a group of individuals of the same species that live in the same geographic region • Community: a collection of different populations that live in the same geographic region

  6. Levels of Organization (continued) • Ecosystem: all of the organisms living in a specific place (biotic) together with their physical (abiotic) environment • Biome: a group of ecosystems with the same climate and similar dominant communities • Biosphere: the part of the planet (including land, water, and air) where all life exsists

  7. Biosphere • The entire Earth is a balanced system. What affects one area can impacts all over the world. Can you list some global ecological situations? • Global Warming (greenhouse gases) • Ozone Layer (pollution using CFC’s) • Gulf Oil Spill • Rain Forest depletion (Amazon)

  8. Rubippy Molecule (converts water + sunlight into Energy) What molecule is this synthetic for?

  9. Energy Flow • Where does all energy for the Earth originate from? • Energy flows through an Ecosystem in only one direction (not recycled) • DIRECTION: Sun (or inorganic compounds) to autotrophs to heterotrophs

  10. Autotrophs • Autotrophs start any energy pyramid as they are able to convert sun (light) or chemical energy into stored energy such as carbohydrates. • Photosynthesis: process of using light energy to convert carbon dioxide and water vapor into simple sugars and O2 (CO2 + H2O = C6H12O6 + O2) • Chemosynthesis: process of converting chemical energy by controlling chemical reactions to produce stored energy

  11. Autotrophs • Give 3 examples of important types of organisms that represent producers • Plants • Phytoplankton • Bacteria

  12. Heterotrophs • Heterotrophs = consumers: rely on other organisms for food • Herbivores get energy from eating only plants • Carnivores get energy from eating only animals • Omnivores get energy from eating both plants and animals • Detritivores feed off the remains (dead matter) or wastes of other organisms • Decomposers break down organic matter

  13. Food Chain shows how living things transfer energy by eating and being eaten. • A Food Web links together all of the food chains in an ecosystem • Each step in a food chain or food web is called a Trophic Level. • Producers are the first (bottom) trophic level • Consumers make up higher trophic levels • Energy Rule Only 10% of the energy available at one trophic level is passed to the organisms at the next trophic level

  14. Ecological Pyramids • Energy Pyramids: energy available at each trophic level • Biomass Pyramids: amount of living tissue (living mass) at each trophic level • Pyramid of numbers: number of individual organisms at each trophic level.

  15. Cycles of Matter • Energy and Matter flow through the biosphere differently • Energy flows in ONE DIRECTION • Matter is RECYCLED • Biogeochemical cycles move matter (carbon, nitrogen, water) through the biosphere. • All living things require water to survive

  16. Water Cycle • Water is recycled. However, water can take various forms from liquid, to solid, to gas. • Percipitation • Condensation • Evaporation • Transpiration

  17. Carbon Cycle • What organisms are responsible for taking carbon out of the air and converting it to organic material? • What type of organisms breakdown dead organic material into basic elements? • What are some examples of processes that put carbon (CO2) into the air? (greenhouse effect)

  18. Ecosystem • What is part of an ecosystem? • Two main keys of an ecosystem: biotic and abiotic factors determine the survival of an organism and the productivity of the ecosystem in which an organism lives. • Habitat is where an organism lives • Niche is an organism’s role in the environment

  19. Relationships • Competition for resources (food, water, space) • What happens if two different species occupy the same niche in an environment? • Predation: one organism (predator) eats another organism (prey) • Symbiosis: organisms that live together • Mutualism - both species benefit • Commensalism – one species benefits and the other is neither helped or harmed • Parasitism – one species benefits (parasite) and the other is harmed (host)

  20. Role of Climate • Environmental factors (atmosphere, temperature, precipitation) combine to produce weather and climate. • What is the difference between weather and climate? • Weather – day to day conditions of the Earth’s atmosphere • Climate – average yearly condition of temperature and precipitation in a region

  21. Climate continued • What are the two main gases that are responsible for maintaining the Earth’s temperature range? • Explain the process (what is the process called?) • Which one affects climate, Latitude or Longitude?

  22. Climate Zones • What affects climate? • Sunlight (latitude) • Ocean Currents (proximity) • Wind Currents • Topography