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The Biosphere Mr. Bragg 2013-2014. Objectives: Define ecology Explain how biotic and abiotic factors influence an ecosystem Describe the methods used.

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Presentation on theme: "The Biosphere Mr. Bragg 2013-2014. Objectives: Define ecology Explain how biotic and abiotic factors influence an ecosystem Describe the methods used."— Presentation transcript:

1 The Biosphere Mr. Bragg

2 Objectives: Define ecology Explain how biotic and abiotic factors influence an ecosystem Describe the methods used to study ecology.

3 What living things do you see in this picture? Non-living things? What do you think we study when we study the Biosphere?

4 I. What is Ecology? A. Ecology– the scientific study of interactions among organisms and between organisms in their environment. 1. Organisms respond to each other and their environment 2. Organisms affect each other and change their environments 3. These affects produce an ever-changing biosphere

5 a. Biosphere- a part of earth in which life exists, including land, water, air, and atmosphere. The biosphere contains every organism that extends from 8km above the earths surface to as far as 11km below the surface of the ocean. Cloud bacteria? Roundworm species discovered in gold mine cave in Africa. Record holder for animal that lives the deepest below sub- surface – approx 2.2 miles down Eats bacteria!

6 b. Ecology and Economics Food, water, and other products humans use are often worth money. Economics is concerned with human interactions based on money and trade

7 c. Levels of Organization Ecology can be studied at various levels of the biosphere. Some scientists focus on just one of these levels. The levels include: organism, population, community, ecosystem, biome, and biosphere

8 B. Biotic and Abiotic Factors 1. Biotic factor- are any living parts of the environment a. Example: insects that a bullfrog may eat, or species that the bullfrog competes with for food or space

9 2. Abiotic factor- are any nonliving parts of the environment a. Example: sunlight, precipitation, and water currents.

10 a. Example: The bullfrog is dependent on levels of precipitation in order to reproduce. b. Physical factors can be influenced by organisms: Bullfrogs live in the muck that is on shores of ponds. This “muck” is made up of sand and bacteria. Trees around the pond affect how much sunlight reaches the shoreline.

11 C. Ecological Methods 1. Ecologists use three scientific approaches to complete their work a. Observation- the first step. Ex: “Which species live here?” or “How does an animal protect its young from predators?”

12 b. Experimentation- testing hypotheses. Ex: Plant Growth Study- setting up an artificial environment in a greenhouse to test the plants responses Top right: camera trap Bottom right: Bengal Tiger Tiger habitat use experiment in Assam, India

13 c. Modeling- some events occur over long periods of time and are difficult to study. Models are based on data collected through observation and experimentation Above: sea level rise modelForest fire prediction computer model

14 Objectives: Define ecology Explain how biotic and abiotic factors influence an ecosystem Describe the methods used to study ecology.

15 Activity Questions 1.What level(s) of organization are being shown in the picture? Use pages your notes as a reference 2.Make a T-chart and list the biotic and abiotic factors that are shown in the photo 3.Infer, what might also live in this area portrayed in the photo? 4.How are the biotic and abiotic factors related?

16 Do Now (Day 2) 1.What does an ecologist study? 2.What are biotic and abiotic factors? Give an example of each. 3.What are the 3 methods used in ecological studies?

17 Objectives: Define primary producers Describe how consumers obtain energy and nutrients

18 II. 3.2 Energy, Producers, and Consumers A. Primary Producers- algae, blue-green bacteria, and plants 1. Autotroph- an organism that is able to capture sunlight or chemicals and use it to produce its own food from inorganic compounds

19 2. Primary producer- the first producer of energy rich compounds that are later used by other organisms. 3. Energy from the sun: sunlight energy is captured through the process of photosynthesis and with the combination of water and carbon dioxide is converted into carbohydrates.

20 Lithotrophs or “Chemoautotrophs” Bottom left: animals dependent on chemoautotrophs in a hydrothermal vent community

21 B. Consumers- animals, fungi, many bacteria 1. Heterotroph- an organism that obtains food by consuming other organisms 2. Consumer- an organism that relies on other organisms for its energy and food supply. a. Classified by the way in which they acquire energy and nutrients

22 b. Types of consumers Herbivores- eat plant leaves, roots, stems, fruits, or seeds Ex: deer, caterpillars, rabbits, horses, koalas

23 Carnivores- kill and eat other animals Ex: wolves, cats, birds of prey, snakes

24 Scavengers- are animals that consume the carcasses of other animals that have been killed by predators or other causes Ex: vultures, spotted hyenas, flesh flies

25 Omnivores- are animals that eat both plants and other animals. Ex: Humans, bears, pigs, cassowary, opossum

26 Detritivores- organisms that feed on plant and animal remains and other dead matter Ex: earthworms, mites, snails, shrimp

27 Decomposers- feed by mechanically breaking down organic matter. This process produces detritus (small pieces of dead material). Ex: bacteria and fungi

28 c. Beyond Consumer Categories Nature and energy transfer is complex Organisms are not going to always fit into tidy categories Ex: Bald eagles are carnivores that are also known to scavenge

29 Objectives: Define primary producers Describe how consumers obtain energy and nutrients

30 Activity – Consumer’s Foldable Create a foldable for the consumer groups (i.e. herbivore, carnivore, decomposer,etc.) Foldable should include: your name (on back), names of consumer groups, descriptions of each group, and examples for each group

31 Do Now #2 (Day 3) 1.What are primary producers? 2.What is another term for a heterotroph? 3.How do we classify heterotrophs? 4.What are the 6 different groups of heterotrophs?

32 Objectives: Trace the flow of energy through living systems Identify the three types of ecological pyramids

33 III. 3.3 Energy Flow in Ecosystems A. Food Chains and Food Webs 1. Food chain- a series of steps in an ecosystem in which organisms transfer energy by eating and being eaten

34 a. Ex: algae (primary producer)  flagfish (herbivore)  largemouth bass (carnivore)  Anhinga (secondary carnivore)  alligator (top carnivore)

35 2. Food web- a network of complex interactions formed by the feeding relationships among the various organisms in an ecosystem a. Ex: Serengeti Plain of Africa- herbivores such as zebras, buffaloes, and gazelles eat several varieties of grass species. Several predators such as lions, hyenas, and leopards, in turn, eat these herbivores

36 The paths linked in a food web are each a food chain with several different paths.

37 b. Big picture: Decomposers are nature’s recyclers which release locked in nutrients into ecosystems. These nutrients are used by producers, which in turn are eaten by consumers. When consumers and producers die, decomposers break them down and release the nutrient back into the system.

38 c. Basic Physics - Matter Law of conservation of matter- matter cannot be created or destroyed in an isolated system

39 c. Basic Physics - Energy First Law Of Thermodynamics - states that energy can neither be created nor destroyed. It may change from one form to another, but the energy in a closed system remains constant. The Second Law of Thermodynamics states that when energy is transferred, there will be less energy available at the end of the transfer process than at the beginning.

40 B. Ecological Pyramids 1.Defined: an illustration of the relative amounts of energy or matter contained within each trophic level in a given food chain or food web. a. Three types: pyramids of energy, of biomass, and of numbers

41 Above: Biomass Pyramid Bottom left- Hypothetical number pyramid 1 2

42 2. Trophic levels- each step in a food chain or food web a. Ex: primary producers, various levels of consumers 3

43 3. Biomass- the total amount of living tissue within a trophic level

44 Objectives: Trace the flow of energy through living systems Identify the three types of ecological pyramids

45 Do Now #3 (Day 4) 1.What is a food chain? 2.What is a food web? 3.What are the 3 types of ecological pyramids?

46 Objectives: Describe how matter cycles among the living and nonliving parts of an ecosystem Explain how human activities affect biogeochemical cycles

47 VI. 3.4 Cycles of Matter A. Recycling in the biosphere 1. Biogeochemical cycles- a process in which elements, chemical compounds, and other forms of matter are passed from one organism to another and from one part of the biosphere to another.

48 2. Classification of Biogeochemical processes a. Biological- activities performed by organisms including: eating, breathing, burning food, waste elimination b. Geological- activities performed by the earth: volcanic eruptions, rock formation and degradation c. Chemical/Physical- formation of clouds and rain, flow of running water and the action of lightning

49 Biogeochemical processes (cont.) d. Human Activity- mining, farming, fertilizer use, and burning of fossil fuels affects the cycles of matter.

50 B. Water Cycle 1. Water continuously moves between the oceans, the atmosphere, and land. Hydrologic Cycle Animation

51 2. The water may be outside living organisms and sometimes it is inside them

52 C. Nutrient Cycles 1.Carbon Cycle a. Carbon is a major part of organic molecules such as carbohydrates, proteins, fats, and nucleic acids. b. Carbon can be found in animal skeletons, rocks, the atmosphere (CO2), dissolved in oceans, and also in fossil fuels (coal, natural gas, oil).

53 Carbon Cycle

54 2. Nitrogen Cycle a. All organisms need nitrogen to make amino acids and nucleic acids b. Nitrogen exists as a gas in the atmosphere, in soils as compounds like ammonia, in decomposing organic matter, and in the ocean or other large bodies of water.

55

56 c. Nitrogen fixation- the process of converting nitrogen gas into nitrogen compounds that plants can absorb and use. Ex: bacteria can use atmospheric nitrogen gas directly. The gas is converted to ammonia. Other types of bacteria convert ammonia into nitrates and nitrites. Plants use these materials to make proteins and nucleic acids

57 Rhizobium is a bacteria associated with the roots of legumes (beans, clover, peanuts, etc…) and helps the plant fix nitrogen. This is useful to the plant, the bacteria, and the farmer. These plants can be grown as crops and rotated or used as “green manure”.

58 d. Humans add nitrogen to the biosphere by manufacturing and using fertilizers. Run-off from fertilizers can end up in surface or ground water

59 3. Phosphorous Cycle a. Phosphorous is essential to organisms as it is part of molecules such as DNA and RNA. b. Remains mostly on land and in the ocean as inorganic phosphate- usually in rocks or soils. c. Rocks and sediments release phosphate as they wear down

60 d. Plants bind phosphate into organic compounds when they absorb it from the soil or water. e. Organic phosphates make their way through the food web to the rest of the ecosystem

61 Phosphorus Cycle

62 D. Nutrient Limitation 1.Primary productivity is the rate at which primary producers (plants) create organic material. a. If one essential nutrient in an ecosystem runs short, then primary productivity will be limited

63 2. Nutrient limitation in soils a. In farming, growth of crop plants is limited by a lack of one or more nutrients in the soil, which is why fertilizers are used b. Fertilizers usually contain: nitrogen, phosphorous, and potassium

64 c. Micronutrients are nutrients that are needed in smaller amounts: calcium, magnesium, sulfur, iron, and manganese Iron deficiency in leaves of melon plant Soybean plant showing manganese deficiency

65 d. All nutrient cycles work together like interlocking gears. If one gear slows down (one nutrient runs short), the whole system slows down or even stops.

66 3. Nutrient limitation in aquatic ecosystems a. The open oceans are relatively nutrient poor when compared to many land areas b. In saltwater environments, nitrogen is typically the limiting nutrient c. In freshwater environments, phosphorous is typically the limiting nutrient

67 d. Heavy rains can bring fertilizer runoff from agricultural fields into aquatic environments and causes dramatic effects such as, algal blooms. Satellite view of Lake Erie in Heavier than usual rainfall coupled with a lower depth of water are two factors linked to the massive algae bloom. Algae indirectly (and in some cases directly through toxins) kills fish due to removal of oxygen from lakes

68 Objectives: Describe how matter cycles among the living and nonliving parts of an ecosystem Explain how human activities affect biogeochemical cycles

69 Do Now #4 (Day 5) 1.How does matter move through the Biosphere? 2.How does water cycle through the Biosphere? 3.Give an example where humans effect the cycles of matter. 4.Explain the analogy of nutrients and interlocking gears.


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