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Chapter 56

Chapter 56: Ecosystem Ecology

Biological Sciences
Course Code
Kamini Persaud

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Biology II
Chapter 56: Ecosystems and
Global Ecology
Ecosystems; when communities live in environments, the environments they live in is in
different ecosystems.
They need to survive to survive and reproduce:
oGlobally how they cycle through the different ecosystems
How energy and matter goes through the ecosystems are different
oEnergy is a open system
Always lost never returned
Earth is a open system with respect to energy
oMatter cycles through the system in a closed system
Not be created or destroyed
Never comes back in a form to be used again
Earth is a closed system with the respect to energy
oThe source that drives the cycle
oPrimarily comes from the sun
oDrives everything on earth
oIs usually lost as heat
oDrives the matter in the cycle
The drive is usually cyclic
Energy is from the sun, and radioactive decay
The physical environment can be divide into 4 compartments whose organisms are very
Most materials that cycle through the earth end up in the ocean
Ocean can only exchange materials at with the atmosphere only at the
Cant cycle with materials at the bottom of the ocean
Materials cycle through slowly, materials stay in the ocean for a long time
Most matter cycle through organisms which then can use them through
upwelling zone
Water is shallower at the upwelling zone
Offshore winds blow over the surface of these water which results
in cycling of nutrients
Colder water bring up nutrients to the surface where the organisms
can use
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Biology II
oFresh water( rivers, lakes, groundwater)
In lakes nutrients taken up by aquatic organisms end up as part of the
Nutrient cycling is faster
The surface is interacting with the atmosphere, which makes it very rich in
oxygen, but not rich in matter
Must organisms that use the matter after death go to the bottom
and end up as part of the sediment
All the nutrients are more toward the bottom and the oxygen is at
the top
When it is a shallow part of water wind does the cycling
In deeper water the usually the cycling is powered by changes in
As temperature changes the density of water also changed
Water is most dense at 4 degrees
oIf warmer or colder it is less dense
In the winter the ice on the surface where the oxygen is freezes the water
Less dense
In the spring the ice melts towards 4 degree
More dense
Mixes with the water
In the summer, more heating up top water gets warmer
Sharp decline in temperature as you go down due to no sun light
Surface waters warm and less dense water layer floats over colder, denser
bottom water. This transition is called thermo cline
Mixing brings the nutrients from the bottom to the top and the oxygen from the
top to the bottom, turnover
oAtmosphere- being divided into 2 different parts
Nutrients hardly enter, only at the inter tropical convergence zone
oWind comes in and warms and rise releasing all the water
oThe ozone layer of gas
oUV radiation is trapped by different GHG so doesnt damage
organisms in the world
What we are exposed to
Most nutrients cycling goes on, contains all the water favour
oLand-only covers ¼ of Earths surface
Elements move slowly on land
Terrestrial compartment is connected to the atmospheric compartment by
organisms that remove and release elements
Materials travel to land through organisms
oE.g. plants take in carbon dioxide and release oxygen
Materials many travel through ground water
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