Biology Vocab Essay, Research Paper
Autotrophs- organisms that are able to synthesize food by sun energy or stored energy.
Plants are autotrophs that we see everyday.
Hetertroph- organisms unalbe to make their own food.
Humans are hetertrophs.
Ecology- Scientific study on interactions between organisms and their environment.
Ecologists study dolphins and their interactions in the water.
Symbiosis- Permanent close association between 2 or more organisms of different species.
My friend s new dog made friends with his current dog, showing symbiosis.
Parasitism- symbiotic relationship in which one species benefits another.
Ticks are parasites as they suck other animals blood, not helping them at all.
Commensalism- symbiotic relationship in which one species benefits and the other is neither harmed nor helped.
Barnacles growing on a whale show commensalism.
Mutalism- symbiotic relationship beneficial to both species.
Birds on cows eat bugs, cleaning the cow, and getting food for themselves.
Biosphere- life supporting portions of Earth composed of air, land, freshwater, and salt water.
The biosphere surrounds the earth entirely.
Ecosystem- populations in a community and abiotic factors with which they interact; examples are terrestrial and marine ecosystems.
We need to keep different ecosystems clean and healthy for wildlife.
Community- several interacting populations that inhabit a common environment and are able to function because each organism within the ecosystem depends on other organisms.
Many organisms in the forest form a community.
Herbivore- to feed on plants
Many animals are strictly herbivores.
Carnivore- to feed on animals
Hyenas are carnivores.
Omnivore- to feed on plants and animals
Humans are omnivores since we eat both plants and animals.
Primary Consumer- or herbivores, compose the second trophic level of a food chain.
Tiny fish feeding on algae and primary plant growth is an example of a primary consumer.
Secondary Consumer- or carnivores make up the third trophic level.
Humans are secondary consumers since we eat primary consumers.
Decomposer- organisms like bacteria and most fungi that play beneficial roles in the ecosystem by breaking down and absorbing nutrients from dead and decaying organic matter.
Without decomposers, dead organic matter would cause overwhelming stench on Earth.
Energy Pyramid- energy decreases at each succeeding trophic level. Total energy transfer from one trophic level to the next is only about 10%.
The energy pyramid shows why the food chain can not exceed five levels.
Oxygen and carbon dioxide cycle- carbon is found in the environment as CO2 in both the atmosphere and in oceans. In atmosphere CO2 moves to aquatic and terrestrial producers. Producers use CO2 in photosynthesis. Organisms obtain carbon when they consume producers or other consumers. Respiration and decay return carbon to atmosphere as CO2. If decay occurs without oxygen, carbon can be bound up in fossil fuel formed over a long time. When fossil fuels are burned (oil, gas, coal) CO2 returns to the atmosphere.
Without oxygen and carbon cycles, life would cease to exist on Earth.
Acid rain- rain more acidic than unpolluted rain water.
Acid rain is cause greatly by the burning of fossil fuels.
Endangered Species- species with members so low that it is in danger of extinction.
Many species of panda are endangered.
Threatened species- species that have rapidly decreasing numbers.
Mink are threatened since people desire their fur.
Biodegradable- solid wastes that can be broken down by natural processes.
Many companies are trying to make their products biodegradable.
Nonbiodegradable- types of wastes that are not easily broken down and can exist in the environment for many years.
Styrofoam is nonbiodegradable.
Populations- interbreeding individuals of one species that compete with one another for food, water, and mates and live in the same place at the same time.
Many populations of insects compete for the same dwelling
Species- population of interbreeding organisms capable of producing fertile offspring.
Every animal of its own kind belongs to the same species.
Niche- role of a particular species in a community regarding food, space, reproduction and how it interacts with abiotic factors.
A niche shows how a species uses and affects its surroundings.
Habitat- the place where an organism lives out its life.
Many beavers habitats are deep in forests with many trees.