Biology - B1.4 - Adaptation For Survival

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B1.4.1 - Adapt and Survive

  • Organisms need materials from surroundings and other organisms to survive
  • Plants need - light, CO2, H2O and nutrients, eg. mineral ions
  • Animals need - food from other organisms, H2O and O2
  • Different microorganisms = different materials - some like plants, some like animals and some don't need oxygen or light
  • Adaptations are special features and allow the organisms to survive in a particular habitat
  • Plant eating = herbivores, animal eating = carnivore - adapted to their diet
  • Most orgainsms live in temperatures below 40C, so their enzymes work
  • EXTREMOPHILES - microorganisms adapted to live in conditions where enzymes wouldn't usually work
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B1.4.2 - Adaptations In Animals

  • If animals weren't adapted to their environment, they'd die
  • Animals in cold climates - have thick fur and blubber, to keep warm
  • Some animals in the arctic are white in winter and brown in summer, as camoflague
  • Bigger animals = smaller surface area to volume: conserve more energy, but difficult to cool down
  • Hot, dry conditions: adapted to conserve water and to stop getting too hot and may hunt and feed at night, to remain cool in the day
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B1.4.3 - Adaptations In Plants

  • Plants need light, water, space and nutrients
  • Water is collected, by an extensive root system, conserved, by having small or waxy leaves or a swollen stem and can be lost through stomata as water vapour
  • Cacti have adapted to dry conditions by storing water well and the mesquite tree has adapted well by having and extensive root system to collect water
  • Animals eat plants, which is prevented by having thorns, poisonous chemicals or warning colours
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B1.4.4 - Competition In Animals

  • Animals compete for water, food, space, mates and breeding sites
  • Their tertitory should be large enough to include this
  • Predetors compete with prey, as they eat them, and prey camoflague themslves to be less visible
  • Prey compete with each other to escape predaors and find food
  • Some animals are poisonous or have warning colours to avoid being eaten
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B1.4.5 - Competition In Plants

  • Plants compete for water, nutrients and light, so some flower before others, to avoid competition
  • Plants with deeper roots can reach underground water better than plants with shallow roots
  • Some plants spread their seeds so they avoid competition, by animals, wind or mini-explosions
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B1.4.6 - How Do You Survive?

  • Unusual adaptions in some animals and plants are very useful
  • Female fig wasps have specially shaped heads for getting into fig tree flowers and ovipositors allowing them to put eggs deep in the flower and some males wait in the flower for the female their whole life
  • The star-nosed mole is almost blind, but very sensitive to touch and smell
  • Venus fly traps have sticky, sweet nectar and are bright red inside
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B1.4.7 - Measuring Environmental Change

  • Environmental changes effect the organisms living there
  • Non-living factors - temperature, rainfall, light and oxygen levels
  • Living factors - new predators, new disease, new plants introducing new food or habitats
  • Pollution indicators and monitoring:
      - lichens grow where the air is cleanest, so tell you about air pollution, particularly sulfur dioxide - they are called indicator species
      - different freshwater invertebrates live in different types of water depending on the water pollution level
      - rain gauges, thermometers, data loggers and pH and oxygen sensors are used to moniter non-living chanes in the environment
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B1.4.8 - The Impact of Change

  • Environmental changes affect the distribution of organisms and it is sometimes difficult to know what has affected organisms
  • Some birds migrate North, creating new competitors
  • The bee population fall could have been caused by several factors, including farmers using chemical sprays, a disease or flowering pattern changes due to climate
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