3Topic 4.1 - Communities and Ecosystems 4.1.1 Define ecology, ecosystem, population,community, species and habitat.Ecology - the study of relationships between livingorganisms and between organisms and their environment.Ecosystem - a community and its abiotic environmentPopulation - a group of organisms of the same specieswho live in the same area at the same timeMAIN PAGE
4Community - a group of populations living and interacting with each other in an areaSpecies - a group of organisms which caninterbreed and produce fertile offspringHabitat - the environment in which a a speciesnormally lives or the location of a living organism
54.1.2 Explain how the biosphere consists of interdependent and interrelated ecosystems.In an ecosystem, organisms feed off of eachother. This relation or interaction of organismscan be in the form of a food chain or a food web.The food chain is a linear and simple feedingrelation,where one organism has one type of foodand is eaten by one type of organism.
6However, a food web is a more complex and it includes more variety of organisms, each of whichcan feed on a variety of other organisms and is fedupon by a variety of organisms. These are not theonly interactions thatcompose the biosphere, however. A remarkable diversity of animal interactions, as well as the work ofplants, bacteria, fungus, and protistscombine to influence the biosphere.
7Also, organic cycles such as the water cycle, the recycling of the respiratory products of animals(carbon dioxide) in photosynthesis, and thetranspiratory return of water to the atmospherein plants all play major roles as well.
84.1.3 Define autotroph (producer), heterotroph (consumer), detritovore and saprotrophs (decomposer).Autotrophs - also known as producers, they canmake their own food - main producers arephotosynthesizers, which utilize the sun'senergy and convert it into chemical energy,which they use to build their bodies.Considered net producers of CO2.
9Heterotroph - are consumers, they feed on ready made organic material, they cannotsynthesize their own food, and they areconsidered net producers of CO2.Detritovore - organisms that feed byingesting dead organisms (for example –crabs, earthworms and vultures).
10Saprotrophs or decomposers- organisms that feed on dead organisms and products of livingorganisms. They secrete enzymes on thesematerials that cause decomposition, and thenthey absorb the resulting simple compoundsinto their bodies. So they do not ingest wholefood, but rather, they absorb decomposedand digested food. Examples arebacteria and fungi.
114.1.4 Describe what is meant by a food chain giving three examples, each with at least three linkages(four organisms).A food chain is a linear and simple feedingrelation, where one organism hasone type offood and iseaten by one type of organism.For example:
134.1.5 Describe what is meant by a food web. A food web is more complex than a food chain andit includes a larger variety of organisms.Each of which feed on a variety of otherorganisms and they are in turn fed onby more organisms. Therefore, if one speciesbecomes extinct the ecosystem will still beable to exist. A drawing will be insertedat a later date of a food web.
14Trophic level - the division of species in an ecosystem 4.1.6 Define trophic level.Trophic level - the division of species in an ecosystemon the basis of their main nutritional source.The trophic level that ultimately supportsall others consists of autotrophs,or primary producers.
154.1.7 Deduce the trophic level of organisms in a food chain and a food web.Drawing will be inserted at a later date.
164.1.8 Construct a food web containing up to 10 organisms, given appropriate information.Do it yourself. You can check back though for apicture which will be inserted at a later date.
174.1.9 State that light is the initial energy source for almost all communities.Light is the initial energy sourcefor almost all communities.
184.1.10 Explain energy flow in a food chain. Energy losses between trophic levels include materialnot consumed or material not assimilatedand heat loss through cell respiration.
194.1.11 State that when energy transformations take place, including those in living organisms,the process is never 100% efficient,commonly between 10-20%.When energy transformations take place,including those in living organisms,
204.1.12 Explain what is meant by a pyramid of energy and the reasons for its shape.A pyramid of energy shows the flow of energy fromone trophic level to the next in a community.The units of pyramids of energy are thereforeenergy per unit area per unit time.
214.1.13 Explain that energy can enter and leave an ecosystem, but that nutrients must be recycled.Energy can enter and leave an ecosystem butnutrients must be recycled. Sun lightis the main source of energy on this planet.It is absorbed by photosynthesizing organisms,which convert light to chemical energy.Nutrients must be recycled by obtaining them fromother organisms or products of organisms.
224.1.14 Draw the carbon cycle to show the processes involved.
234.1.15 Explain the role of saprotrophic bacteria and fungi (decomposers) in recycling nutrients.These organisms feed on dead organisms andproducts of living organisms. They secreteenzymes on these materials that causedecomposition, and then they absorbdecomposed and digested foods.
24Examples include many species of bacteria and fungi. These are essential organismsto an ecosystem, since they causerecycling of materials betweenbiotic and abiotic parts of the ecosystem
25Topic Populations4.2.1 Outline how population size can be affected by natality, immigration, mortality and emigrationPopulation size can be affected by natality (birth) because as birth rate increases, the population increases. The increase in a population is exponential, as the population increases so does the birth rate. Immigration is the arrival to the population from another area.MAIN PAGE
26This adds to the numbers in the total population. Mortality is death, and the mortality rate,like the birth rate, increases as the populationincreases. This, along with emigration (migrationof population to another area) can help tostabilize population growth.In order for a population to be stable in size,Natality + immigration = mortality + emigration
274.2.2 Draw a graph showing the sigmoid (S-shaped) population growth curve.Will be answered at a later date.
284.2.3 Explain reasons for the exponential growth phase, the plateau phase, and thetransitional phase between these two phases.The exponential growth phase exists becausethat is when the population has alreadybegun to grow, but not a lot yet, and itrises quickly because there are nolimiting factors yet and the resourcesare in unlimited amounts.
29The plateau phase begins when the organism hits it's carrying compacity, which is themaximum number of organisms in apopulation that can be supported bythe environment at a certain time, ina certain ecosystem.
30The transitional phase in between these two phases occurs because this is when the limiting factorsin the environment start to limit theincrease, slowing the population increase
314.2.4 Define carrying capacity Carrying capacity is the number of organismsin a population that can be supported bythe environment at a certain time,in a certain ecosystem.
324.2.5 List three factors which set limits to population increase.Three factors that set limits to population increaseare the availability of nutrients, the numberof predators, and the accumulationof waste materials
33A random sample is when every object (people or things) have an equal 4.2.6 Define random sampleA random sample is when every object(people or things) have an equalchance of being chosen every timesomething is chosen.
344.2.7 Describe one technique used to estimate the population size of an animal species basedon a capture-mark-release-recapture method.Various mark and recapture methods exist.Knowledge of the Lincoln index is what is required.Population size = (n(1) + n(2))/n(3) n(1) = number of individuals initiallycaught, marked, and released. n(2) = total number of individuals caught inthe second sample. n(3) = number of marked individualsin the second sample
35Although some simulations can be carried out (eg. sampling beans in sawdust), it ismuch more valuable if this is accompaniedby a real exercise on a population of animals.The limitations and difficulties of the methodcan be fully appreciated and some notion ofthe importance of sample size can be explained.Make sure you understand that there is aneed for choosing an appropriate methodfor marking organisms.
364.2.8 Describe one method of random sampling used to compare the population numbers oftwo plant species, based on quadrat methods.This will be answered at a later date.
374.2.9 Calculate the mean of a set of values. = 57 57/7=8.143
384.2.10 State that the term standard deviation is used to summarize the spread of values aroundthe mean and that 68% of the values fallwithin + or - 1 standard devation of the mean.Standard deviation is used to summarize thespread of values around the mean and 68%of the values fall within + or - 1 standarddeviation of the mean. This rises to about95% for +or - 2 standard deviations.
394.2.11 Explain how the standard deviation is useful for comparing the means and thespreadof ecological data between two ormore populations.A small standard deviation indicatesthat the data is clustered closely aroundthe mean value. Conversely a large standarddeviation indicates a wider spread around themean. Details of statistical tests to quantifyvariations between populations, such asstandard error, or details about confidencelimits are not required
40Topic 4.3 - Evolution 4.3.1 Define evolution. Evolution is the process of cumulative change in the heritable characteristics of a population, the descent of modern organisms from preexisting life formsMAIN PAGE
414.3.2 State that populations tend to produce more offspring than the environment can support.Populations tend to produce moreoffspring than the environmentcan support
424.3.3 Explain that the consequence of the potential overproduction of offspringis the struggle for survival.The world has limited resources. Organismsproduce many more offspring thancan live off of these limited resources.Therefore, there is a struggle to survivebetween offspring. This allows for naturalselection, because those best suited forthier environment survive and pass ontheir better-suited genes.
434.3.4 State that the members of a species show variation.The members of a speciesshow variation.
444.3.5 Explain how sexual reproduction promotes variation in a species.Sexually reproduction promote variationsbecause, unlike the cloning that occurs inasexual reproduction ,every offspring in agenetic combination of his of her parents.This allows for infinite possibilities, as onecan easily see by looking at the peoplearound them.
45During meiosis, many different gametes are created because chromosomes are independently assortedduring meiosis. Then, during fertilization, one of themany gametes from the mother joins with one of themany gametes from the father, creating a new andunique combination of genes.
464.3.6 Explain how natural selection leads to the increased reproduction of individualswith favorable heritable variationsCombining the ideas of the struggle to survive,and the great variation in organisms, wecan see that a group of different organismsare all fighting to occupy a certain niche(a place in the ecosystem).
47If organism A is better suited for this environment than organism B, organism A will survive andreproduce more than organism B. It is veryimportant to understand that longer life is not a"goal" of natural selection. An organism that isbetter suited to an environment will be able toreproduce and pass on their superior genes.
484.3.7 Discuss the theory that species evolve by natural selectionIn order to answer this question, theideas aforementioned should be used.
49If more organisms are produced that have "superior" genes, genes that make the organisms moresuited for their environment, then they are ableto produce more organisms with superior genes.This causes the population become more and moremade of these superior organisms. When a populationof a species changes as a result of natural selection,the species has evolved.
504.3.8 Explain two examples of evolution in response to environmental change; one mustbe multiple antibiotic resistance in bacteriaExample 1: Two varieties of the moth Bistonbetularia exist in the forms of different bodycolor. One is black, the other is speckled.The black moth is easily seen by predatorswhile the speckled one is camoulflaged. Whenon a tree covered in lichens, the pepperedmoth blends in very well.
51The number of speckled moths was greater than the number of black moths, becausethe speckled genes made the speckledmoths more suitable for thier environmentof lichenous trees. Because they were ableto camouflage, they could evade predatorsmore than black moths could, which allowedthem to reproduce more moths with thegenes for speckled color.
52Then, the trees began to get covered in suit due to the industrialization, andthe black moth was able to be morecamouflaged than the speckled moths.Because of this more black moths thanspeckled moths evaded predators,allowing them to produce more blackmoths. So the population of black mothsthen increased and the speckled mothpopulation decreased.
53Example 2: Resistance to antibiotics in bacteria. If a culture of bacteria is sprayed with antibiotics,most of the bacteria is killed. A small number thatnaturally have genes resistant to antibiotics, willremain. It is important to note that these bacteriadid not "learn" to resist antibiotics.
54These bacteria has mutated genes that somehow allowed them to resist antibiotics. These bacteriawill reproduce and pass on thier resistant genes.Natural selection chose the antibiotic resistantones, so those are the only ones to exist.
55This can become a problem when trying to kill a bacterial infection in a patient, because ifthe bacteria is resistant to the antibioticsgiven, then they can't be killed. Someonewould have to come up with a newantibiotic that it is not resistant to,which can be difficult.
56Topic 4.4 - Classification 4.4.1 Define species.Species - a particular kind of organisms; members possess similar anatomical characteristics and have the ability to interbreed and produce fertile offspring.MAIN PAGE
574.4.2 Describe the value of classifying organisms. The number of species on this planet is huge andthis requires a system of ordering andgrouping that facilitate the process ofstudying and investigating the differentaspects of these species. Similarspecies are grouped by their similarcharacteristics.
584.4.3 Outline the binomial system of nomenclature.Organisms are given two names in this system(binomial). The first name indicates the genus andthe second indicates the species. Thegenus is written in a capital letter andthe species in small letters. Also the twonames are usually printed or underlined.Naming organisms in this way facilitatesthe process of identification and helps inovercoming language barriersbetween scientists
594.4.4 State that organisms are classified into the kingdoms Prokaryotae, Protoctista,Fungi, Plantae and Animalia.Organisms are classified into the kingdomsProkaryotae, Protoctista, Fungi,Plantae and Animalia.
604.4.5 List the seven levels in the hierarchy of taxa - kingdom, phylum, class, order, family,genus and species - using examplesfor each level.Kingdom - Animalia Phylum- Chordata Class - Mammalia Order - Cetacea Family - Delphinidae Genus - Tursiops Species - truncatus -Bottlenose Dolphin-
614.4.6 Apply and/or design a key for a group of up to eight organisms.Dichotomous key for: Blue whale, lobster, codfish,ant, monarch butterfly, honey bee, dove, and bat.1. Is it aquatic (cannot survive on land)?If yes, go to 2 If no, go to 42. Does it have gills?If yes, go to 3 If no, it is a blue whale
623. Does it have legs?If yes, it is a lobster If no, it is a codfish4. Does it have a body divided into 3distinct parts: head, abdomen, and thorax?If yes, go to 5 If no, go to 75.Does it have a stinging structure on its thorax?If yes, it is a bee If no, go to 6
636. Does it have wings with visible orange-and-black coloration?If yes, it is a monarch butterfly If no, go to 77. Does it have mandibles as its mouth parts?If yes, it is an ant If no, go to 88. Does it have feathers?If yes, it is a dove If no, it is a bat
64Topic Human Impact4.5.1 Outline the two local or global examples of human impact causing damage to an ecosystem or the biosphere. One example must be the increased greenhouse effect.The greenhouse effect is a naturally occuring phenomena in the ecosystem of the planet. It is simply the accumulation of carbon dioxide and other gases such as methane in the atmosphere, which traps heat from the sun's radiation and raises planetary temperatures.MAIN PAGE
65Recently, however, increased industry and burning of fossil fuels have caused the releaseof excessive amounts of carbon dioxide into theatmosphere. The planet is now enveloped bya layer of carbon dioxide far thicker than wouldbe there naturally, which allows the sun radiationto enter our atmosphere, but preventsit from going out.
66This causes the trapping of heat into our atmosphere, and the consequent gradualincrease in temperature around the world,hence global warming. This effect is calledthe greenhouse effect, since the layer ofcarbon dioxide around our planet has similareffects to the glass walls of a greenhouse incausing increased temperature inside.
67The ozone layer is present at about 20 Km above the surface of the earth. It absorbs ultra violet light thatradiates from the sun, thus protecting us from theharmful effects of these radiations. Increased industryin the last 20 years or so, have caused the breakingof ozone molecules into oxygen, resulting in a hole inthis protective layer.
68The chemicals responsible for this effect are a group of chlorofluoro carbons (CFCs) that are used inrefrigeration, aerosol cans and other types of industry.These compounds are very light and they escape tothe upper layers of the atmosphere, reaching theozone layer and destroying it. A hole in the ozonelayer is most prominent over the Antarctic.
694.5.2 Explain the causes and effects of the two examples in 4.5.1, supported by data.The greehouse effect is largely a result ofhuman industry and machinery, includingautomobiles and other vehicles thatemit significant amounts of carbon dioxidefrom the burning of fossil fuels.
70Its effects have included an increase in global temperature by several degrees over the pastdecade, a melting of glacial deposits across theglobe, and the recent thinning of Artic and Anarticpack ices; all of the effects reported as themuch-publicized global warming.
71Many scientists predict more drastic changes in temperature and environment in the future if currentwarming patterns continue. Ozone depletion, aspreviously mentioned, is due to chemicals calledCFCs being released into the atmosphere. CFCs,or chlorofluorocarbons, are a compound of chlorine,fluorine and carbon, as the name would suggest.
72They are found in refrigerants and a variety of aerosol containers. When these compoundsare released into the atmosphere, by the actionof spraying a can of hair spray, for example,they react with and break apart double-bondedoxygen molecules (ozone).
73One molecule of CFC can destroy thousands of ozone molecules; thus their large-scalerelease into the atmosphere during the 1980'sand early 1990's was very damaging. The resultwas the opening of a large hole in the ozonelayer (the atmospheric layer responsible fordeflecting UV radiation from the sun harmfulto most organisms) which wascentered over Anartica.
74For several years the hole moved throughout the Southern Hemisphere, often exposingcountries such as Austrailia to dangerouslyhigh amounts of UV radiation. Today thehole still exists, but since the banning of theproduction or use of CFCs it has shrunkconsiderably due to the repair of theozone by natural causes.
754.5.3 Discuss measures which could be taken to contain or reduce the impact of the two examples,with reference to the functioning of the ecosystem.The best method currently agreed uponto resolve the greenhouse effect issueis a twofold proposal.
76The first involves attempts to reduce the production of greenhouse gases byinternational treaties on the amount of gasesemitted, such as theKyoto Treaty, the useof alternative fuel and energy sources that emitlittle or no greenhouse gases, and improvedfiltering for industrial and automotive gasesalready produced.
77The second involves allowing the environment to stabilize this problem itself. This includeschecking the destruction of forests and otherphotosynthetic environs and organisms, asthese naturally regulate the amount ofcarbon dioxide in the atmosphere.MAIN PAGE