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08/31/2015

Chapter3
EcologicalandEvolutionaryPrinciplesofMarineBiology
Ecologyisthestudyofinteractionsbetweenorganismsandtheirenvironmentandtheeffectsof
theseinteractionsonthedistributionandabundanceoforganisms.Ecologistsstudythedistributionand
abundanceoforganismsandthemechanismsthatdeterminethedistributionalpatterns.
Resourcesmayberenewableornonrenewable.
Ecologyisstudiedatmanyinteractinghierarchicallevels,includingindividual,population,
species,community,andecosystem.
Manyecologicalinteractionsoccurbetweenindividualsandmaybeclassifiedonaplusminus
zerosystem,dependingonwhetheranindividualbenefits,suffersbecauseof,orisnotparticularly
affectedbytheinteraction.
Territorialityisthemaintenanceofahomerange,whichisdefended.
Mobileandstationarypredatorssearchforprey,usingchemical,mechanical,andvisualstimuli;
somelurepreybyusingvariousdeceptions.
Mobilepredatorsmayadjusttheirhuntingbehaviortooptimizetherateofingestionofprey.
Resistancetopredatorsincreasesindividualfitnessandisthereforeenhancedbynaturalselection.
Marineorganismsavoidpredatorsbymeansofcrypsis,deceit,escaperesponses,andmimicry.

Manymarineorganismscanproducevariousmorphologicfeaturestodiscouragepredatorattacks
(e.g.,spines,strengthenedskeletons,andotherdevices).
Manymarineorganismsaredefendedchemicallybytoxicorganicsecondarycompounds,acid
secretions,andtoxicmetals.
Thepresenceoftoxicdefensesubstancesisoftenassociatedwithconspicuouscoloration.
Mechanicalandchemicaldefensesagainstpredationchangeinfrequencywithlatitude,habitat,
andoceanicbasin.
Microhabitatcanstronglyaffectacreaturesvulnerabilitytopredators.
Commensalrelationshipsbenefitonespeciesonly.Thebenefitusuallyrelatestofood,
substratum,orburrowspace.
Amutualismisanevolvedassociationamongtwoormorespeciesthatbenefitsallparticipants.
Mutualismoftenreducestheriskofpredationordiseaseorprovidesfoodforonememberofthe
speciespair.
Parasitismoccurswhenmembersofonespeciesliveattheexpenseofindividualsofanother,
ideallywithoutconsumingthehoststotallyasfoodandtherebykillingthem.
Parasitesofinvertebratesoftenaffectthereproductionofthehost.
Parasitesoftenhavecomplexlifecyclesthatdependuponmorethanonehostspecies.

Apopulationisagroupofindividualsthatareaffectedbythesameoverallenvironmentandare
relativelyunconnectedwithotherpopulationsofthesamespecies.
Populationchangestemsfromsurvival,birth,death,immigration,andemigration.
Limitingresourcesmayaffectpopulationgrowth.
Populationsareoftenmetapopulations,whichareaseriesofinterconnectedsubpopulations,some
ofwhichmaycontributedisproportionatelylargenumbersofindividualstothemetapopulationasa
whole.
Spatialdistributionisameasureofthespacingamongindividualsinagivenarea.
Apopulationmayshowaregularchangeindensityalongasamplingline.
Taxonomicclassificationinvolvessuccessivelynestedgroupingofspecies.
Evolutionaryrelationshipscanbeusedtoconstructtreesofrelationship.Taxaaregroupedby
meansofsharedevolutionaryderivedcharacters.
DNAsequencesarenowusedcommonlytoconstructevolutionarytrees.
Organismfeaturescanbeexplainedonthebasisofacombinationofgeneticandnongenetic
components.

Singlegenotypesmayhavethecapacitytodevelopintodistinctlydifferentmorphologies.
Thegeographicchangeinthefrequencyofgeneticvariantsiscalledacline.
Newspeciesusuallyoriginateafteraspeciesisdividedbyageographicbarrier.
Thegeographicrangeofspeciesislimitedbygeographicbarriersandhabitatlimitations.
Themarinebiotacanbedividedintogeographicprovinces.
Thepresentdistributionofspeciesistheendresultofspeciation,dispersal,andextinction.
Manycommunitiesareorganizedaroundimportantstructuralaspectsofthehabitatoraround
foundationspeciesthatdetermineagreatdealofthehabitatstructure.
Distributionandabundanceofspeciespopulationsinacommunityaredeterminedbythe
combinedeffectsofthefollowingprocesses:(1)dispersaloflarvae,spores,andadults,(2)competition,
(3)predationandherbivory,(4)parasitism,(5)disturbance,and(6)facilitation.
Larvalrecruitmentpatternsstronglyreflectthespeciescompositionofmarinecommunities.
Competitionwithinandbetweenspeciescentersaroundthelimitingresourcesofspaceandfood.
Competitionbetweenspeciesmayinvolvedirectdisplacement,preemption,ordifferential
efficiencyintheuseofresources.

Competitionhasbeendemonstratedinmarinecommunitiesbyexperimentalremovalsof
abundantspeciesfollowedbyexpansionsofcompetitors.
Competitionforspaceinvolvesmechanismsofovergrowth,standoffs,andvariousmeansof
aggression.
Interspecificcompetitionmayleadtodominancebysinglespeciesinagivenmicrohabitat.
Competitioncombinedwithdifferentialsuccessindifferentmicrohabitatsresultsinniche
structure.
Someassemblagesofnaturalspeciesshowextensivecoexistenceofpresumedcompetitors
despiteapparentresourcelimitation.
Predationmaypreventthedominationbyasuperiorcompetitorandmaystronglyaffectspecies
composition.
Predatorsarenotomnipotent:preycanmoveintovariousrefuges,escapinginspaceortime,or
theycanoutgrowthepredator.
Seasonalinfluxesofpredatorsinshallowwaterandintheintertidalzonemaydevastatelocal
communities.
Disturbanceopensupspaceinthecommunity.Itsfrequencymayregulatelongtermaspectsof
speciescompositioninahabitat.
Speciesdiversitymaybemaximizedatintermediatelevelsofdisturbanceandpredation.

Parasitesarecommonandcanaffecttheirhostsbyreductioningrowthandreproductionorby
enfeeblement.
Diseasesinmarineorganismsarepoorlyunderstood,buttheycancauseswiftpopulation
declines.
TheroleofdiseasemustbeverifiedbyrigoroususeofKochsprinciples,whichinvolve
identificationofthepathogen,isolation,andsuccessfulexperimentalinfectionofthetargetorganism.
Diseaseinteractsstronglywithchangingenvironmentalconditionsandtheincreaseofstressful
physiologicalconditionsofthehost.
Targetorganismsmayevolveresistancetodisease,resultingincyclesofvirulenceinmarine
populations,whicharepoorlyunderstood.
Successionisapredictableorderingofarrivalanddominanceofspecies,usuallyfollowinga
disturbance.
Successionmaybringacommunityfromoneconditiontoanother;however,otherforcesmay
alsochangecommunitycompositioninaprofoundway,andlocalfeedbacksmaypreservethechange.
Ecologicalinteractionsmaybedirectorindirect.
Indirecteffectsincommunitiescaninvolvedensitymediatedindirectinteractions(DMII)ortrait
mediatedindirectinteractions(TMII).
Anecosystemisagroupofinterdependentbiologicalcommunitiesandabioticfactorsinasingle
geographicareathatarestronglyinteractive.
Nearlyallecosystemshaveprimaryproducers(mainlyphotosynthetic),whichareconsumedby
herbivores,whichinturnareeatenbycarnivores.Materialescapingthiscyclepassesthroughthe
saprophytecycle.
Somepredatoryspeciesattheapexoffoodwebsexertstrongeffectsontheoverallecosystem.
Foodwebsmaybecontrolledbytopdownprocessesusuallyaffectedbypreyonlowertrophic
levelsorbybottomupprocesses.
Ecosystemstudiesusuallyaccountfortheprocessesthataffectmovementofmaterialsandenergy
throughfoodwebsandthroughthenonlivingpartoftheecosystem.