BIO120H1 Chapter Notes - Chapter Section 1: Transpiration, Soil Texture, Desiccation

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27 Nov 2018

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BIO120: SimUText Physiological Ecology (Section 1 Trade Offs
and Species Distributions)
In association with Lecture 15 & 16 and Reading Quiz 7
The Fundamental Tasks of Living
- Physiology is study of how organisms work investigate how organisms obtain energy and
nutrients necessary to survive, how they transport these resources to where they are needed inside
body, and how they eliminate leftover waste products
- Ecologists interested in understanding how species deal with environments and how
environments restrict where species live directly affected by physiology
- Physiological ecology is study of physiology in context of resources and environments available
on Earth
Do Species Distributions Form Patterns?
- Species and communities found in different locations on Earth are quite varied; each place has its
own unique group of organisms
- Uniqueness comes from each species being adapted to environment in which it lives
- Patterns of species distribution around globe aren’t always obvious
- There are large number of factors that potentially affect what types of species are found in each of
the places land or water, amount of sunlight, availability of different nutrients, pH, and other
species living in same area
- All considerations are important, but two factors are more important for terrestrial species:
temperature and moisture
- Temperature and amount of water help determine type of ecosystem that exists in different
locations around Earth
- Annual temperature and precipitation vary greatly across broad geographic areas; locations close
together in terms of amount of precipitation and average temperature are not necessarily close
geographically, but have similar vegetation
Whitakers Diagram: Biomes
- Whittaker diagram suggests that average temperature and precipitation of particular location
controls what type of vegetation may grow there
- At extreme of high temperature and low precipitation, you find deserts which have high
biodiversity, but low total biomass
- At moderate to high temperatures with high precipitation, there’s a high total biomass and
- Temperature and precipitation can broadly predict distribution of global biomes there’s a
fundamental relationship among temperature, precipitation, and amount of water needed by plants
Temperature Vs. Water
- Ambient temperature and precipitation combine to control amount of water available in an
ecosystem available to plants, and hence, its overall health
- Limits on environmental conditions that an organism can tolerate are known as its physiological
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