Ecology Vocabulary (Chapter 18)

The following terms can be found in Chapter 18.

BioticDescribes living factors in the environment
AbioticDescribes the nonliving part of the environment, including water, rocks, light, and temperature.
EcologyThe study of the interactions of living organisms with one another and with their environment.
PopulationA group of organisms that are closely related and can mate to produce fertile offspring.
CommunityAll the populations of species that live in the same habitat and interact with each other
Ecosystema community of organisms and their abiotic environment
BiosphereThe part of the Earth where life exists
ProducerOrganisms that use sunlight directly to make food
ConsumerOrganisms that eat other organisms
HerbivoreAn organism that only eats plants
CarnivoreAn organisms that eats only animals
OmnivoreAn organims that eats both plants and animals
ScavengerOmnivores that eat dead plants and animals
DecomposerOrganisms that get energy by breaking down dead organisms
Food chainthe pathway of energy transfer through various stages as a result of feeding patterns of a series of organisms
Food webA diagram that shows the feeding relationships between organisms in an ecosystem
Energy PyramidA triangular diagram that shows an ecosystem's loss of energy, which results as energy passes through the ecosystem's food chain.
Carrying CapacityThe larges population that an environment can support at any given time
CompetitionWhen two or more individuals or populations try to use the same resource, such as food, water, shelter, space, or sunlight
PreyAn organism that is killed or eaten by another organism
PredatorAn organism that kills and eats all or part of another organism
SymbiosisA relationship in which two different organisms live in close association with each other
MutalismA relationship between two species in which both species benefit
CommensalismA relationship between two organisms in which one organism benefits and the other is unaffected.
ParasitismA relationship between two species in which one species, the parasite, benefits from the other species, the host, which is harmed.
CoevolutionThe evolution of two species that is due to mutual influence, often in a way that makes the relationship more beneficial to both species.