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ENVS 3710 (4)
Lecture 2

Lecture 2 on Review of ecological principles and concepts

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York University
Environmental Studies
ENVS 3710
Sam Benvie

Review of ecological principles and concepts -looking at many landscapes within one; not just based one specific type of landscape Physical environment – climate - Organisms relationships with one another; and a relationship within their own physical environment - Ecosystem: living part (biome); non – living (biotope) - Climate: more than just weather; compose of number of things (interdependent) – eg. Temperature, light, moisture ... etc (create climate) - Img: tropical rainforest in Costa Reaca – the fog is generated by the trees, put out moisture by the trees Soil - Building material; ecologist: living - Define relationship each other: the plants define the soil and the soil define the plant – optimize the plant and soil - Soil originate through wind, water erosion, cracking of rocks - Profile: take a section of soil (look at what is going on), “bands” – characteristics of vegetation on top of the soil, processes of weather breaking down material (porosity – poorest to water, compacted soil poor water movement through it) - Reactivity: major impact on nutrients in the soil; fertility (how much living matter can occur within a specific area); water might be there but not accessible to plants - Moisture: pattern (what could survive within an ecosystem) - Img: soil pyramid (refers to the texture of the soil); 3 way kind of chart; Clay is finest – sand is the less finest *loam (soil texture not organic matter – half way blend between silt [nutrient rich] and sand [depiction of nutrients]) - *farmers love loam in agriculture Aquatic biotopes – Hydrological Cycle (how water behaves within an aquatic ecosystem) - Precipitation – how they preserve water? Temperature (influence the hydrological cycle) - Surface runoff – water that runs over the ground - Subsurface flow – water that runs underground; does not have to flow the same pattern as surface runoff (problem in urban centers) - Evaporation – getting water back from the ground and large bodies of water back into the air - Evapotranspiration – combined effects of evaporation from large bodies of water and plants (cooling themselves) - Energy influences – energy’s is what drives ecosystems, eg. Sunlight (drives everything including your car) - oceans – important because they have water, but they also absorb heat, different parts of the ocean absorbs heats and carbon dioxide (major issues); creating ocean shifts - Topography – micro climates; determine when soil slide or stay static Population – Growths - Dynamics of population – either increase or decrease - Density – how many species within a specific area - Cover - how much areal cover (space coverage) do they have? - Biomass – the amount of living matter within the system; the weight of everything - Dispersion – how do populations move around? Plants – how does the seeds get distributed around the environment - Survivorship – not everything that sheds survive; a minimum number of species that would pass on into the future - Age distribution – younger plants: help further the population of a specific species; difference between how long a species would last without younger population o Example: the black oats in high park; all about the same age, not reproducing to well, might disappear o Example: need at least 300 people to breeding; less than that would cause interbreeding causing problems - Intrinsic rate of increase – without interference, how many individuals enter the population and goes into adulthood have their off springs - Environmental resistance – environment pushing back on the species; causes establishment within a specific area - Carrying capacity – classical economics: this does not apply to human beings (get around this because of technological advancement); an environment or ecosystem that can support a specific number of species Population – inter species interaction: competition - Specific patterns: interspecies competition (animals and plants) Population – inter species interactions: herbivary - Eating a plant by an animal - Herbivore Population – inter species interactions: predation - Killing a herbivore by a predator - Example: the lady bug Population – inter species interaction - One organism benefits while the other loses - Parasitism – rarely kills the host, often leach off them - Symbiosis – relationship, both parties benefit; not ambulatory (live independent) o Example: fungi and one of several algae (can live independently) - - Mutualism – relationship are always in occurrence with acid and alcidine systems, o img: fungal mycelia (inside this root – get sugar from roots; sugar vs. water and nutrients) - Commensalism – rather like a mutualism, does not have to be created simultaneously, others can benefit from the “site” Population – regulation - Intrinsic (controls within the population) vs. extrinsic (controls from the environment) - Density dependent – when the population gets to a specific number than the population will split - Density independent - Cycles – population enlarges and contracts, often based on climate and temperature Evolution – variation and selection (change over a longer period of time) - Adaptation - - Speciation - - Mutation - - Evolutionary change - - Natural selection – environment having an impact, mutation and organism (9% success advantage – to be the domina
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