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Population Ecology.docx

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Queen's University
BIOL 103
Peter T Boag

Population Ecology - Ecology is the study of how organisms interact with and adapt to the environment o Environment includes abiotic (rainfall, soil type) and biotic factors (competitors, predators) - Population ecology is the study of how and why the number of individuals in a population changes over time or space o Requires knowledge of population size and composition (sex ration, age structure, condition of individuals, etc) - Population density is the number of individuals of a species per unit area at a given time - Population dispersion (spacing) gives clues about population processes and relations with local environment o Clumped dispersion o Uniform dispersion o Random dispersion o Distinguish from dispersal***** - Dispersion of population members may depend on: o Density o Interactions between conspecifics o The distribution of other species that are competitors o Predators or prey o Environmental features such as moisture, temperature, soil type, wind direction, etc. - Relative importance of four processes affects population growth, sizem and composition o Natality (birth rate b) o Morality (death rate d) o Immigratio
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