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The Biosphere.

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Presentation on theme: "The Biosphere."— Presentation transcript:

1 The Biosphere

2 Chapter 3 Outline 3-1: What is Ecology? 3-2: Energy Flow
Interactions and Interdependence Levels of Organization Ecological Methods 3-2: Energy Flow Producers Consumers Feeding Relationships Ecological Pyramids

3 Chapter 3 Outline 3-3: Cycles of Matter Recycling in the Biosphere
The Water Cycle Nutrient Cycle Carbon Cycle Nitrogen Cycle Phosphorus Cycle Nutrient Limitation

4 Interactions and Interdependence
Ecology: The study of interactions among organisms and between organisms and their environment (or Surroundings) Biosphere: The combined portions of the planet in which all life exists including land, water, and atmosphere.

5 Levels of Organization
To understand relationships within the biosphere, ecologists ask questions about events and organisms that range in complexity from a single individual to the entire biosphere.

6 Levels of Organization
Levels that ecologists study interaction: Species: groups of organisms that can breed to produce fertile offspring Population: groups of individuals that belong to the same species and live in the same area. Community: groups of populations in an area Ecosystem: collection of all the organisms that live in an area AND all the nonliving components.

7 Levels of Organization
Larger systems are also studied  Biomes Biomes: groups of ecosystems that have the same climate and similar dominant communities.

8 Ecological Methods Three basic approaches to study ecology: Observing
Experimenting Modeling Scientists make models to understand complex phenomena (ex. Global Warming) Many Models are math formulas

9 Producers Sunlight is the main energy source for life on Earth
Only a few organisms can use chemical compounds as their energy source Autotrophs: organisms that use energy from the environment to produce their own food. Ex. All plants, some bacteria, and some algae.

10 Producers Autotrophs are also called producers.
Plants make their own food through Photosynthesis Organisms that produce their own food from chemicals are called chemoautotrophs and use the process of chemosynthesis. (Bacteria)

11 Consumers Organisms (animal, fungi, many bacteria) that annot make their own food must eat other organisms that can! Heterotrophs: organisms that rely on organisms for energy and food.

12 Consumers Types of consumers: Herbivores Carnivores Omnivores
Detritivores – feed on dead plant and animal matter (Detritus) Decomposers – break down organic matter.

13 Feeding Relationships
Energy flows through an ecosystem in one direction: Sun  autotrophs (producers)  heterotrophs (consumers) The energy stored by producers is passed through an ecosystem through a food chain: a series of steps in which organisms transfer energy by eating and being eaten. Ex. In Marine food chains, producers are algae, eaten by plankton, eaten by fish, etc.

14 Feeding Relationships
Food Webs: links many food chains together Complex feeding network in an ecosystem

15 Feeding Relationship Trophic Levels
Each step in a food chain or Food Web EX. Producer  1st Level

16 Ecological Pyramids Ecological pyramid: a diagram that shows the relative amounts of energy or matter contained within each trophic level in a food chain or web.

17 Ecological Pyramid Three types of pyramids in ecology: Energy pyramid
Only about 10% of the energy available within one trophic level is transferred to organisms at the nest trophic level. (Organisms use most energy for respiration, movement, reproduction, etc.)

18 Three Types of Pyramids
Biomass Pyramid: Biomass: Total amount of living tissue within a trophic level. Shows the amount of potential food available for each trophic level. Pyramid of Numbers Shows the number of individual organisms at each trophic level.

19 Three types of Pyramids
Energy Pyramid Shows the relative amount of energy available at each trophic level. Organisms use about 10 percent of this energy for life processes. The rest is lost as heat. Pyramid of Numbers Shows the relative number of individual organisms at each trophic level. Biomass Pyramid Represents the amount of living organic matter at each trophic level. Typically, the greatest biomass is at the base of the pyramid.

20 Recycling in the biosphere
In addition to energy, organisms need water, minerals, and other compounds in order to live Unlike energy that flows one-way through an ecosystem, matter is recycled within and between ecosystems. Elements, chemical compounds, and other forms of matter are passed from one part of the biosphere to another through biogeochemical cycles. Matter cycles within biosphere because it is not used up, just converted from on form to another.

21 The Water Cycle Water moves between the ocean, atmosphere, and land. Water enters the atmosphere as water vapor (a gas). Evaporation: the process by which water changed from a liquid to an atmospheric gas Transpiration: water lost into the atmosphere from a plant. After evaporation, the water vapor condenses into droplets to form clouds. When the droplets become large and dense enough, the water returns to the Earth in the form of Precipitation.

22 The Water Cycle

23 Nutrient Cycles Nutrients: All the chemical substances that an organism needs to sustain life Every living organism needs nutrients to build tissues and carry out essential life functions. Like water, nutrients are passed between organisms and the environment through biogeochemical cycles.

24 Nutrient Cycles Three important nutrient cycles: carbon cycle, nitrogen cycle, phosphorus cycle.

25 The Carbon Cycle Carbon is important because it is a component of skeletons, it is the atmosphere, and is the building block of many macromolecules. Four main types of processes move carbon through its cycle: Photosynthesis and respiration Erosion and Volcanic activity Decomposition Human activities (ex. Burning Fossil Fuels)

26 The Carbon Cycle CO2 in Atmosphere CO2 in Ocean

27 The Nitrogen Cycle All Organisms require nitrogen to make amino acids (which make proteins). Nitrogen gas is in the atmosphere, but only some types of bacteria can break it down to be used by plants and animals Nitrogen fixation – the process of converting nitrogen gas into ammonia (after this other bacteria convert ammonia into nitrates to be absorbed by plant roots)

28 Nitrogen Cycle When organisms die, decomposers return nitrogen to the soil as ammonia. Other soil bacteria convert it back to nitrogen gas in a process called denitrification.

29 Nitrogen Cycle N2 in Atmosphere NO3- and NO2- NH3

30 The Phosphorus Cycle Phosphorus is essential to living things because it is used to build DNA and RNA. It is not found in the atmosphere like carbon and nitrogen. Phosphorus is in rocks, soil and ocean sediments. It is released when rocks and sediments wear down.

31 The Phosphorus Cycle

32 Nutrient Limitation Ecologists are interested in the primary productivity (the rate at which organic matter is created by producers) Limited by available nutrients Limiting nutrients – a single nutrient that is limiting growth in an ecosystem

33 Nutrient Limitation Because of this farmers use fertilizers to boost productivity. Fertilizers usually contain nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium When aquatic ecosystems receive runoff from fertilized fields, there is a boom of algae growth (producers). Algal Bloom: a huge increase in the growth of algae. If there are not enough consumers to eat this algae, it will cover the surface of the water and disrupt the ecosystem.


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