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EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT: ECOSYSTEMS

Population Growth Interaction Among Organisms Cycling of Matter

Ecosystems: All the biotic and abiotic factors in Ecologists have described four main ways that Cycles in Ecosystems:
an area and how they interact. species and individuals affect each other: - Water Cycle
- Abiotic: non-living 1. Competition: the relationship that occurs - Carbon Cycle
- Biotic: living when two or more organisms need the - Nitrogen Cycle
same resource at the same time
Growth Curves: The Carbon Cycle
- Linear 2. Coexistence and Cooperation: Carbon can be in two different forms:
Coexist: Occurs when In the atmosphere (sky), carbon is
organisms live in the same carbon dioxide (CO2)
habitat but rely on different In the bodies of plants and animals,
resources. carbon is sugar (AKA glucose)
Cooperation: is a helpful How carbon enters and exits the atmosphere:
- Exponential interaction among organisms Carbon is ADDED to the atmosphere
living in a limited area by respiration
Carbon is REMOVED from the
3. Predators and prey: Many interactions atmosphere by photosynthesis
among species occur because one
organism eats another.
- Logistic - Prey: The organism that is eaten.
- Predator: The organism that kills
and eats the prey.

4. Certain symbiotic relationships: how


organisms affect each other

- Mutualism: both organisms benefit


Populations Grow with a logistic growth curve Organism 1 Organism 2
due to limiting factors
The Nitrogen Cycle
Limiting Factors: biotic and abiotic factors that Bacteria convert nitrogen from the
limit growth and reproduction atmosphere into a usable form for
Examples: living things. This process is called
sunlight, climate, temperature, water, food, - Parasitism: one organism benefits Nitrogen Fixation.
space, competition with other organisms while the other is harmed Bacteria makes nitrogen available to
Organism 1 Organism 2 the roots of plants and animals can
Carrying Capacity: The largest population that then get nitrogen by eating plants.
an environment can support over a long period Nitrogen is returned to the soil in
of time. animal waste and through the
- When a population grows larger than human use of fertilizers.
its carrying capacity, limiting factors Animals and plants need nitrogen to
cause the population to become make proteins
- Commensalism: one organism
smaller.
benefits while the other is not
Limiting Factors affected
Organism 1 Organism 2
Exponential
Growth
Population

Time
Energy Flow
Producers organisms that make their own food, using energy from the sun (plants)
- Primary Consumers: organisms that cannot make their own food and get energy by feeding on plants.
- Secondary Consumers: organisms that cannot make their own food and get energy by feeding on primary consumers.
- Decomposers: organisms that cannot make their own food and get energy by breaking down the organic material of dead animals

Energy Pyramids:
- The flow of energy in an ecosystem can be represented by an energy pyramid.
- Only about 10% of the energy at one trophic level is passed onto the next higher trophic level.