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Changes 1- Populations

Changes 1- Populations. Topic 2.6. Death. Population. Immigration. Emigration. Birth. Factors that increase population size : Natality (Birth rate) is recruitment to a population through reproduction Immigration from external populations e.g. Bird migration

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Changes 1- Populations

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  1. Changes 1-Populations Topic 2.6

  2. Death Population Immigration Emigration Birth Factors that increase population size: Natality (Birth rate) is recruitment to a population through reproduction Immigration from external populations e.g. Bird migration Factor reducing population size: Mortality (death rate) which is the death rate from any source e.g. predation Emigration, where individuals leave the population for another habitat

  3. For a stable population: Immigration Emigration + Natality + Mortality =

  4. A Sigmoid (s - shaped) Population Curve • Lag phase: Population growth begins slowly from a few individuals. • Exponential Phase: Exponential growth occurs, the conditions are ideal and maximum growth rate is reached. • Transitional Phase: Growth rate begins to slow down as factors such as food, water and space become limiting. • Plateauphase: Carrying capacity for the population has been reached and the population number becomes stable. The carrying capacity is the population size that can be supported by a particular environment. • Decline phase: If there is a sudden change in the environment meaning that the environment can no longer support the population, such as a drought causing food shortage, the population will crash and the whole process begins again. Population size Transitional Phase Exponential Phase Decline phase Plateau phase Lagphase Time

  5. Carrying Capacity. • An ecosystem can only support a certain size of a population – its carrying capacity. • Carrying capacity is affected by the amount of energy available to the organism – more energy available means a higher population!

  6. Population size can be affected by the following: • Density dependent factors: These are any factors, dependent on the density of the population in question. Generally their effects increase as population increases. Some examples of these are predation, disease and competition. They tend to form a negative feedback mechanism that controls population. • Density independent factors: These are any factors, not dependent upon the density of the population in question. Some examples of these are climate or weather and catastrophe.

  7. Internal and external factors affecting populations • Internal – factors that act within a species. Eg. limited food supply, availability of territory, density dependent fertility. (Take a look at this interesting article about overcrowding by Aidan Sammons – link ) • External – factors that act between different species. Eg. Predation and disease.

  8. Case studies • Rabbits • The Lynx and the Snowshoe Hare.

  9. Rabbits in Australia

  10. In 1859, Thomas Austin brought out 24 rabbits, 5 hares and 72 partridges and released them on his property, in Victoria. • In 1887, Rabbits were first sighted in Northern Territory.

  11. The gestation period for a rabbit averages 31 days. A rabbit can live as long as 10 years Rabbits can start breeding as early as 3-4 months of age European Rabbits have an average litter size of 7 – 9 but may be as high as 15! 8 Rabbits eat as much grass as 1 sheep!

  12. By 1907 Rabbit numbers had reached plague proportions (up to an estimated 600million) causing untold environmental damage:

  13. So from 1901 -1908 they tried to build a….

  14. It didn’t work….. So in 1950, after research carried out by Frank Fenner, Myxomatosis was deliberately released into the rabbit population, causing it to drop from an estimated 600 million to around 100 million. • Genetic resistance in the remaining rabbits allowed the population to recover to 200-300 million by 1991.

  15. To combat this trend, Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) scientists developed and accidentally released calicivirus (also known as Rabbit Haemorrhagic Disease or RHD) in 1996. The Australian Government refuses to legalise a vaccine to protect pet rabbits against Myxomatosis, for fear the rabbit may escape and transmit resistance to the disease. A legal vaccine exists in Australia for RHD. There is no cure for either Myxomatosis or RHD, and many affected pets are euthanised.

  16. Activity: Using the information in this power-point: • Draw a sketch of the population curve for Rabbits in Australia from 150 to present day. • Label relevant parts of the curve and include approximate dates and population sizes. • Discuss with a friend whether the methods of control were ethically or environmentally justifiable.

  17. Predator Prey Relationships • The lynx and the Snow Hare

  18. A lynx -Eats Snowshoe hares

  19. A Snowshoe Hare. - Eaten by Lynxs.

  20. Activity: • How will increasing numbers of Snowshoe hare affect the numbers of lynx? • How will increasing numbers of Lynx affect the numbers of Snowshoe hare? • How will decreasing numbers of Snowshoe hare affect the numbers of lynx? • Does this explain the population graph?

  21. J – population curvesShow a ‘Boom and Bust’. • Exponential growth followed by ‘Dieback’. • Growth is not limited by density dependent factors. • Often ‘overshoots’ the carrying capacity of the ecosystem. • Examples: Bacteria, algae, invertebrates, many fish species and some small mammals. Population Time Population Time

  22. There are 2 groups of species with differing reproductive strategies. Those that go for rapid growth (r-strategists) and those that go for Karrying Kapacity (K-strategists). These are extremes – most species fall somewhere in the middle.

  23. Survivorship curves. • This is the fate of groups of individuals through their life span. K- strategists – Few young, lots of parental care, so mortality at young ages is low. Most organisms live to average lifespan. % Population of survivors r- strategists – many young, limited parental care, so high infant mortality. Few organisms live to full lifespan. Most organisms come somewhere in between. Age

  24. Activity: Deaths: 100 young and eggs 200 eggs laid A survival model for a species of bird • What is the lifespan of these birds? • What is the potential population size? • How many survivors are there after the 1st year? • What is the percentage mortality after the1st year? • What is the percentage mortality after the 2nd year? • What is the percentage mortality after the 3rd year? • What would the survivorship curve for this population look like? • Is this a K or an r strategist? Population pool- birds of breeding age. 100 Deaths: 100 birds 50 25 12 0 1 2 3 4 Age in years Question form Page 164 – Environmental Systems and Societies Course companion – Jill Rutherford – Oxford University press 2009 -

  25. Picture sources: • Slide 4 • Slide 7 • Slide 8 • Slide 9 • Slide 10 • Slide 11 • Slide 12 • Slide 13 • Slide 16 • Slide 17 • Slide 18

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