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Ecosystems and Communities. Ch. 4. Weather is the day-to-day condition of the Earth’s atmosphere at a particular time and place. Climate is the typical weather pattern over time in an area. (avg. year around temperature) .

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weather and climate
Weather is the day-to-day condition of the Earth’s atmosphere at a particular time and place.

Climate is the typical weather pattern over time in an area. (avg. year around temperature)

Ecosystems can change with climate changes. Hot, cold, rainy, sunny. (1.40b)

Can you think of any examples where ecosystems have changed with the environment?

Weather and Climate
greenhouse effect trapping of heat in the atmosphere
CO2, methane water vapor and a few other atmospheric greenhouse gases trap heat energy and maintain Earth’s temperature range.

Greenhouse effect is the natural situation in which heat is retained by the layer of greenhouse gases.

Greenhouse Effect- trapping of heat in the atmosphere
ozone layer
Band of ozone (O3) that shields the earth from much of the sun’s harmful UV radiation.

Thining increases the exposure to UV radiation, increasing cataracts and skin cancer and reduce crop supply. It may decrease resistance to disease.

Causes of thining:

CFC’s (chloroflorocarbons are ordorless, noncorrosive compounds that were once used as proprellants in aerosol cans and in production of plastic foam, coolants in air conditions, refrigerators and freezers.

Ozone Layer
global warming
Global warming is is the increase in the Earth’s average temperature.

Much of the sunlight that hits the surface of our planet is converted into heat energy and then radiated back into the atmosphere.

Where are some of the gases coming from that are causing this effect?

Greenhouse gases do not allow heat E to pass out of the atmosphere as readily as light energy enters it.

The gases trap the heat.

If these gases were not present in the atmosphere, the Earth would be 30oC cooler.

In 2050, Earth’s temp may increase by 2 to 4oC.

Global Warming
latitude and longitude
Longitude – vertical

Latitude- horizontal

As a result of differences in latitudes and thus the angle of heating, Earth has 3 main climate zones.

Polar, Temperate and Tropical.

Where do you think each are located?

Latitude and Longitude
climate zones
Tropical Zone- equator to 30o N and 30oS latitudes.

Temperate Zone- 30o to 60o N and S latitudes.

Arctic (Polar)Zone- beyond 60o N or S latitudes.

Climate Zones
heat transport in the biosphere by winds
Heat Transport in the Biosphere by Winds
  • The unequal heating of the Earth’s surface drives winds and ocean currents, which transport heat throughout the biosphere.
  • Winds form because warm air rises and cool air sinks. What zones does air rise? Sink?
  • Prevailing winds bring warm or cold air to a region, affecting it’s climate.
ocean currents
Ocean currents
  • Cold water sinks, warm water rises.
  • Cold water near the poles sinks and then flows parallel to the ocean bottom, eventually rising again in warmer regions in a process called upwelling.
  • Surface water is moved by winds.
parts of the environment
Abiotic factors- non-living parts of the environment.

A-without, bio-life

Ex: water, soil, light , temperature, wind, and physical space.

Biotic factors- living parts of the environment.

Ex: plants, animals and other organisms.

Parts of the environment

1.43 Understand that and describe how organisms are influenced by a particular combination of living and non-living components in the environment.

Every species in a habitat has characteristics that enable it to function in the unique abiotic and biotic factors.

It provides the members of a species with food, shelter, water, and whatever else they need to survive.

A niche is the full range of physical and biological conditions in which an organisms lives and the way in which the organisms uses those conditions.

An organism’s role in the environment.

What organism eats

how it eats, where lives

how reproduces

temperatures needed to survive

where in food chain,

Can two species share a niche in the same habitat? Note: different tree elevations may be different habitats.

community interactions
Competitionoccurs when organisms of the same or different species attempt to use an ecological resource in the same place at same time.

Resourceis any necessity of life, such as water, nutrients, light, food or space.

Competition exclusion principle states that no two species can occupy the same niche in the same habitat at the same time.

Community Interactions
  • Organisms rely on their changing environment to survive. How? Even a small change to one type of organism can have a major impact on all of the other organisms in an environment.
  • Predator-prey relationships.
  • Symbiosis- different species rely on each other. 3 kinds.
    • Mutualism- both partners benefit.
    • Commensalism- one partner benefits and the other is unaffected.
    • Parasitism- One benefits the other is harmed. Which benefits?
    • Give examples of each.
changes in an ecosystem
Ecosystems can be reasonable stable over hundreds of years. If a disaster such as a flood or fire occurs, the damaged ecosystem is likely to recover in stages that eventually result in a system similar to the original one.Changes in an Ecosystem


changing with the environment
Ecosystems are always changing, sometimes quickly and dramatically with a fire or flood or sometime slowly.

Damaged ecosystems from a flood or fire are likely to recover in stages that eventually results in a system similar to the original one.

Ecosystems can be relatively stable over hundreds or thousands of years.

Changing conditions affect the communities of organisms that live in the ecosystem

Changing with the Environment


succession changes over time
Orderly, natural changes that take place in communities of an ecosystem is a succession.

What is a pioneer species?

Primary succession is the colonization of new sites by communities of organisms after a change in the ecosystem. (Volcanoes)

1000’s of years

After time, primary succession slows down, and the community becomes fairly stable.

Succession: Changes over Time
secondary succession
A stable, mature community that undergoes little or no succession, is a climax community.

Describe a place around you where you have seen succession occurring.

Secondary succession is the sequence of community changes when a community is disrupted by natural disasters or human actions.

Fewer than 100 years

Secondary Succession


succession in a marine ecosystem
Note: Succession can happen in any ecosystem.

The following the succession of a whale-fall community.

Large whale dies and sinks to ocean floor and attracts scavengers and decomposers.

Tissues are eaten by smaller org. Decomposition enriches sediments, for other species.

Heterotrophic bacteria decompose oil in bones and serve as energy sources for chemosynthetic autotrophs that support other org.

Pg. 96

Successionin a Marine Ecosystem
A biome is a large group of ecosystems that share the same type of climate community.

Land- Terrestrial

Water- Aquatic

Microclimate- climate in a small area that differs from the climate around it.



(Make graphic organizer for biomes including: climate, flora, fauna, location, other characteristics.

Biome link

  • Shows two components of climate
  • Temperature and precipitation

San Luis Opispo, California

Tundra: cold and treeless, and most of the soil is permanently frozen. A thin layer of soil thaws briefly during short, cool, summers. Winters are long, dark and very cold.

plant life in the tundra consists of mosses and lichens

Where do you think tundras are located?

Artic Zone

Northern N. America, Asia, Europe

taiga boreal forest
Taiga (Boreal Forest)
  • Taiga: located south of the tundra, at the northern edge of the temperate zone. Winters are long, cold, and summers are relatively mild.
  • How are they different from tundras?
  • The taiga climate and soil can support trees such as conifers;.
  • N America, Asia, and N. Europe
temperate forest
Temperate Forest
  • Grows where summers are pleasantly warm with frequent rains, and winters are somewhat cold.
  • What type of trees make up a temperate forest?
  • Tall deciduous trees and coniferous trees.
    • Conifers- seed-bearing cones and needles.
    • Deciduous-sheds leaves during particular season.

Eastern US, SE Canada, most of Europe, parts of Japan, China and Australia

chapparral temperate woodland and shrubland
Chapparral (Temperate Woodland and Shrubland)
  • Warm region that has a rainy winter season, followed by a long, dry summer.
  • How do chapperal organisms adapt to these extremes in precipitation?
  • Plants are drought-resistant; reptiles and insects have thick, watertight coverings.
  • W coasts of N and S America, Mediterranean Sea, S. Africa, Australia
tropical rain forest
Tropical Rain Forest
  • Warm, wet weather, lush plant life, and diverse animal life. Poor soil
  • What abiotic factors contribute to this diversity?
  • Sunlight, water, soil and temperature.
  • Parts of S. and Central America, SE Asia, parts of Africa, S India, NE Australia
  • Tropical Dry Forests – rainfall is seasonal rather than year round. Rich Soil
  • Parts of Africa, S. and Central America, Mexico, India, Australia and Tropical Islands
  • Too little precipitation creates deserts, arid regions with sparse plant life.
  • Extremely dry, hot deserts may consist only of shifting sand dunes. Deserts: Africa, Asia, Middle East, US, Mexico, S. America, Australia
  • Extremely cold deserts include those is in Mongolia and China.
  • How do plants conserve water?
  • Store water in thick, succulent stems.
  • Widespread communities characterized by grasses and small plants.
  • Temperate grasslands( summers hot and winters are cold and windy)
    • Central Asia, N. America, Australia, central Europe, upland plateaus of S. America
  • Tropical savannas (warm year-round and have alternating wet and dry seasons.)
    • Large parts of eastern Africa, southern Brazil, northern Australia
other land areas
Mountain ranges- abiotic and biotic conditions vary with elevation.

Move up temperature decreases and precipitation increases.

Polar ice caps- cold year round.

Mosses and lichens grow.

Few plants

Northern- Polar bears, seals, insects and mites.

Southern polar region- 5km of ice. Penguins and marine animals.

Other Land Areas
marine biomes
Most of the water on earth is salty.

Fresh water is confined to rivers, streams, ponds, and most lakes.

Photic Zone is the portion of the marine biome that is shallow enough for sunlight to penetrate.

Aphotic Zone- Deeper water that never receives sunlight.

Marine Biomes
freshwater biomes
1. Flowing water: streams, rivers, etc.

2. Standing waters: ponds, lakes.

plankton- tiny-free floating or weakly swimming organisms that live in freshwater and saltwater.

phytoplankton- single-celled algae

zooplankton- feed of phytoplankton

Freshwater Biomes

3. Wetlands: ecosystem where water either covers the soil or is present at or near the surface of the soil for at least part of the year.

Bogs-freshwater wetlands

Marshes- shallow wetlands along rivers

Swamp- flooded forest

4. Estuary: wetlands where fresh water and saltwater mix. They form where rivers meet the sea and deposit nutrient-rich sediment.

detritus- tiny pieces of organic material that are food.

Salt marshes- temperature zone estuaries dominated by low-tide line and seagrasses underwater.

Coastal Wetlands (mangrove swamps): along seacoast that are sometimes mixed with saltwater. Florida

Phytoplankton and algae

Coastal OCEAN

Kelp forests

Squids and fishes make their own light.

Bottom-dwellers, sea stars, shrimp, crabs, clams, worms, urchins, sponges and sea anemones.

Benthic Zone

marine ecosystems
Marine Ecosystems
  • Intertidal Zone- org. exposed to regular and extreme changes. Tides moves. Star fish and clams must attach themsevles.
  • Coastal Ocean- extends from low-tide mark to the outer edge of the continental shelf.
    • Kelp forests
    • Coral Reefs- calcium carbonate
marine ecosystems1
Marine Ecosystems
  • Open ocean- 500 m to 11,000 m. Low levels of nutrients. Octopods, dolphins, whales, fish.
  • Benthic Zone- ocean floor. Cold, dark, pressure at bottom
ecosystems and communities review
Ecosystems and Communities Review
  • Click on the following link and choose your text book. Review the links and take the self-test for Ch. 4.
  • Ch. 4 Review