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Ecology in the Methow Ecology: The interaction of living organisms with one another and with matter and energy. 1 [For web viewers: right click on the.

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Presentation on theme: "Ecology in the Methow Ecology: The interaction of living organisms with one another and with matter and energy. 1 [For web viewers: right click on the."— Presentation transcript:

1 Ecology in the Methow Ecology: The interaction of living organisms with one another and with matter and energy. 1 [For web viewers: right click on the screen; you should get a menu box with the option Edit Image. Choosing that option should take you to the powerpoint editing mode which will make the text for each image visible.] Program by Dana Visalli/dana@methownet.com/www.methownaturalist.com

2 5 primary characteristics of terrestrial ecosystems: 1.Energy flows through daily 2.Water flows through annually 3.Resources cycle perpetually 4.Soil is the basis of terrestrial life 5.Stable ecosystems have stable populations Ecology: The interaction of organisms with one another, and with matter and energy. 2

3 Energy flows in from outside the ecosystem 3

4 The sun is 93 million miles away; 1 billionth if its NRG reaches earth 4

5 5

6 Nutrients: no more are being delivered 6

7 Where does nature store its waste? 7

8 8 The real dirt on dirt: the foundation of terrestrial life

9 9 Stable ecosystems have stable populations

10 Young ecosystems cannot retain energy/water/nutrients 10

11 5 primary characteristics of terrestrial ecosystems: 1.Energy flows through daily 2.Water flows through annually 3.Resources cycle perpetually 4.Soil is the basis of terrestrial life 5.Stable populations What are some ways ecosystems can retain energy? Mature ecosystems observe all 5. 11

12 12 A food and energy pyramid

13 13 Struggle for energy at the top of the NRG pyramid

14 14 The fact that energy degrades and is limited is counter-intuitive and offense to many

15 What are some ways ecosystems can retain water? 15

16 How do ecosystems retain nutrients? 16

17 Decomposers 17

18 Ambrosia beetle, and beetle galleries 18

19 Limiting Factor: some aspect of the environment that limits primary production 20

20 Each ecosystem has its own way of interacting with energy and matterMethow shrub-steppe 2

21 Montane ForestPacific Silver Fir 21

22 Aquatic EcosystemMethow River 22

23 Ecological Succession 23

24 24 Succession in a mid-elevation Methow Forest

25 25 Douglas-fir crowding Ponderosa

26 Disturbance can reset Succession 26

27 27 The Methow 17,000 years ago– and last year

28 Keystone Species 28

29 29

30 Co-evolution 30

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32 Colonizers versus Symbiotic Community 32

33 33 Symbiotic Organisms

34 Proximate Emergent properties: soil creation, carbon sequestration, oxygen in atmos- phere, soil retention, nitrogen in atmosphere, three-dimensional world (water is 3D by nature but life made the land 3D through the capacity of plants to grow hundreds of feet in the air), communication (from development of sight, sound, smell, touchwithout sight flowers would not have developed, nor flight, most vertebrates would in fact be absent; without the capacity to interpret vibrations in the atmosphere there would be no bird song, speech, animal talk, thunder; touch may be the first and most basic sense, a sense of the world around the organism),natural selection and evolution, refinement of species, seed dispersal, climate moderation (carbon reduction, transpiration, temperate moderation, shading, moisture retention), the diversification of the web of life (which is complex; in the Methow only plants make appreciable biomass/foodabout 1300 speciesbut there are probably 20,000 or more species of life in the Methow), population moderation e.g. predator/prey relationships, herbivore/plant relationships, ecosystems tendency to grow more efficient, complex diverse, stable over time, organisms and ecosystems build on previous structures and accomplishments (nitrogen fixation in plants, insect pollination, fungal mycorrhizal, food digestion by bacteria in gut of animals). 34 Some other properties of ecosystems that we arent covering…..

35 Ultimate Emergent Properties: 1. Life changed the atmosphere; both oxygen and nitrogen are pumped into the atmosphere by life. While N2 is a triple bond and hard to break, lightening does break it, at which point it combines with O to become NO. Without life all N would be removed from the atmosphere in a few million years. Interestingly, N2 is made available to the atmosphere by anaerobic bacteriaArchea. Oxygen would not have built up as it has even with photosynthesis without the sequestration of carbon, which had to wait for an abundance of land plants. 2. Photo- synthetic marine life is responsible for making the ozone layer possible, without which terrestrial life could not exits due to unfiltered ultra-violet radiation. 3. Life is responsible for the concentrated accumulations of metal ores on the planet that have made industrial society possible. 4. Life has removed carbon from the atmosphere by sequestering it as organic matter in geologic formations. Life has helped maintain a stable earth temperature over 4 billion yearseven though the sun has increased its output by 25% in that timeby removing carbon from the atmosphere. The heat leaving the earth has to exactly match heat arriving, or the earth will warm or chill. 5. Terrestrial plant life alters the precipitation pattern in continental climates through transpiration; 50% of the rain that falls in the Amazon is produced by the Amazon rainforest. 6. Life is a geologic force that has helped to create tens of thousands of feet sediment in the form of coal, limestone, and iron ore. 7. Life increases the weathering of rockand the release of rock-bound nutrientsby greatly increasing the amount of carbon dioxide in the soil. This reacts with rainwater to form carbolyic acid, which is reactive with rock. 8. Life has greatly increased the transport of nutrients across the biosphere and uphill against gravity, thereby increasing the fertility of areas distant from the oceans. Pacific salmon are an example of this; until recently about 16 million salmon weighing an average of 10 pounds each (160 million pounds) migrated up the Columbia River every year to upland rivers, where they then spawned and died, releasing ocean nutrients in the mountains. More……….. 35

36 One Methow Ecosystem 36

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40 What to do when theres nothing to do: erect Moai 40

41 Ideology overwhelms reality, biology trumps ecology 41

42 What happened on Easter Island…… and why? ProximateUltimate Proximate 1) overshoot of carrying capacity (population & consumption level) 2) environmental damage (which reduces carrying capacity) Ultimate 1) Genes: reproduction, personal status, security of the clan 2) The Mind serves the genes: belief versus ecological reality 42

43 The Clovis Culture 13,600-13,000, distinctive spear points 43

44 Native Americans * 44

45 Methow TribeWinter Tipi 45

46 46 Chief JosephNez Perce TribeWallowa Valley

47 Gobekli Tepe Rapa Nui-Easter Island Northern Iraq 47

48 Trajectory of human intelligence over time 48

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51 51 Understanding basic ecology is an emergent property of the human mind discarded cellphones juvenile albatross fed plastic

52 Beliefs Unite the Clan 52

53 The nutrients in the soil- nitrogen, phosphorus & potassium- have to come from somewhere 53

54 Steps to a durable culture: 5 primary characteristics of terrestrial ecosystems: Energy flows through daily Water flows through annually Resources cycle perpetually Soil is the basis of terrestrial life Stable population 1.Live primarily on energy income 2.Live on water income 3.Create no waste 4.Build soilgrow food locally 5.1 child per couple 6.Refuse to participate in destruction of the biosphere 54

55 55 Earth from the Moon– not very big

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60 60 The End Every Ending is a New Beginning This powerpoint was produced by Dana Visalli dana@methownet.com It is posted online at www.methownaturalist.com


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