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what is an ecosystem?
a community of living components reach with abiotic organisms in a form of a system
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who first used the term biosphere?
edward suess
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what order does the atmopshere go up?
troposphere, stratosphere, mesosphere ad thermosphere
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what is found in the stratosphere?
microorganisms which can only exist as part of bioaerosols, solid or liquid agglomerations organisms
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how do we know how far to measure the biosphere to?
previously thought it was only to when roots went, but bacteria has been recovered a lot deeper than this , need to look at temperature rather than depth
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how deep is the deepest trench on earth?
marianas trench, 11000 metres deep, bacteria has been found here, nutrients shrink rapidly to the bottom
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what is an autotroph?
anything that can fix carbon (anything that can make its own food)
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what is a photoautotroph?
uses solar energy to fix carbon, mainly composed of low entropy carbonates
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what is gibbs free energy?
possibility of doing work
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what does entropy mean?
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what is the equation for photosythesis in light?
carbon dixode+water=oxygen and glucose
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what is the equation for photosythesis in the dark?
co2-calvin cycle-sugar(ch2o)
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what % of the earths biosphere is found at depths below 1000m?
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how does life work on earth in plants(photoautropy)
sun(free energy), matter(co2 and h20) going into the lower internal entropy(carboydrates), with wasteproducts coming out (02-higher entropy)
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what happens in the environment in plants?
thermdyanmic disequilbrium resulting from observation, towards a entropy/free energy gradient
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when does life increase?
moving from a high entropy to a low entropy
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how does life work in animals on earth? (chemoheterogy)
organic compounds (o2) and chemical energy stores in organic compounds result in lower internal entropy(proteins) resulting in higher energy waste products(c02, h20)
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what happens to oxygen and organic compounds to get to co2 and water?
respiration through autotrophs and fungi, bacteria and animals (heterotrophs)
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whatare the two types of chlorophyll?
ch3 in chlorophyll A and CHO in chlorophyll b
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describe strucutre of chlorophyll?
porphyrin ring, is the active part(loose electorns) and hydrocarbon tail is the end bit
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when does ATP stand for?
adenosine triphosphate
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how is ATP made?
ADP(partially charged) plus a phosphate molecule and energy
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what is the difference between low energy and high energy NADP?
low energy(oxidised form) has one less hydrogen atom than the high energy reduced form
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what does NADP stand for?
nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate
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how do you turn NADP into NADPH for STORING ENERGY?
add a hydrogen+ and 2 electron^- and energy
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How do you turn NADP into NADPH for RELEASING ENERGY?
NADPH releases enery +NADP and h and 2electrons
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describe the strucuture of a chlorophyll?
outer membrane, inner membrane, stroma(dark reactions) thylakoid membrane(lightreactions) stroma lamellea, intermembrane space, granum (stack of thylakoid)
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what does a stroma do?
liquid in a chloroplast were calvin cycle takes place
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wheat does thylakid do?
stacks arecalled grana, contains chlorophyll, makes plant green, have photosystems in them,which absorb sunlight, electron transport chains, ATP AND NADP(h)-calvin are produced
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what does photosystem 2 do?
oxides water and transfers electrons to photosystem 1, GENERTATE ATP
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what does photosystem 1 do?
generates NADPH, generate ATP
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what bit in photosystem 2 absorbs light?
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what happens in photosystem 2?
photon light hits the granum, and bounces down to P680 where it gains an electron from water, which splits into oysgen and hydrogen in the process, electron moves up thenthought electorn transport chanin
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what is the electron transport chain?
moves the electorn from photosystem 2 to 1, energy gets lower, energy is absobred by ATP
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what does photo system 1 do?
photon absorbed from sun, passesdown grana to p700, all night is absobred apart from green, electron from photosystem 2, is excted by photon, to p700 and moves up energy states into reaction center, moves to seocnd transport chain
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what happens after phtoosystem 1?
once electron has left photosystem 1, move down second elecron transport chain, through ferrodoxin, NADP takes in electron , requires 2 hydrogen tho and another , this ATP and nadph creates glucose molecule
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what is the calvin cycle?
captures carbon and turns it into sugar, c02 from the air and RuBP (containing 5 carbon), initited by rubisco, what welds one c from a c02 moleculewith the rubp TO build a 6 sequencesto produce Pgas, ATP and NADPH(changes into g3p)
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what is heterotrophy respiration?
thekrebs cycle and ETC, organisams take the carbohydrates and use the citric acid or krebs cycle to breakdown the molecules and get ATP AS BIOPRODUCTS THEY prudce c02 and h20
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what is the flow of energy in the biosphere?
sun, light energy - autotrophs-organic compounds-(release of heat) -- hetertrophs-(atp)-c02 and h20- back to the start
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what is a soil?
top layerof the earths crust, dynamic three phrase system, solid(45mineral particles ad organic matter), liquid(25water and salts) and gas(25-air)plus living organisms(5)
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what is pedogenesis?
soil formation which is a slow process, soil is non renewable
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what arethe inputs to soil?
mineral weathering and organic matter, parent material, depends on rock weathering,flood deposits, root biomass and leaf litter
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what is mixing and translocation of the soil?
bioturbation(mixing due to organisms) and physical processes
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what types of transofrmation are there in the soil?
chemical and biological
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what is eluvation?
1.a process by which material dissolved or suspended in water within soil moves down or sideways as rainwater moves through the soil loss of colloids(one substance issuspended in another)
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what are the outputs to soil?
weathering, erosion(windand water), leaching(loss of minerals ue to perlocation), different from eluviation, lost from topsoil and deposited in subsoil
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what is illuvation?
the introduction of salts or colloids into one soil horizon from another by percolating water.
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what is perlocation?
movement and filtering of fluids through porous materials
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what is a colloid?
when one substance of microspocial size is dispersed throught another substance
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what is bioturbation?
moving of soils by animals or plants
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what are chemcial forms of transformation?
chemical-dissolving and precipitation
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what are the bioligical forms of transformation?
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what is the structure of a soil look like?
organic, surface, subsoil and parent material
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what does the fertility of its soil mean?
ability to support a desired crop(yield and quality), must have water holding properties, air and porosity and humidity, cation exchange capacity, soil texture/strucutre
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what is soil texture?
relative proprtions of soil seperates(particles of a certain size), soil seperates are clays, silt and sand
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what is soil structure?
arrangement of individual mineral particles into larger aggregates of peds(single soil particle)
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what are the 7 main strucutres of soils?
strucutreless simple grain, structureless massive, crumb, blocky,prismatic, columnar and platy
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what is an example of a strucutreless single grain one?
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what is a massive structureless mean?
no strucutre visible, clods poorly developed, clod=lump of mass
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what is a crumb?
more or less rounded, fine
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what is blocky?
more or less equidimensional peds, either angular or sub angular
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what is prismatic?
vertically elongated peds with planar faces
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what is columnar?
vertically elongated peds with planar faces but with rounded tops due to slaking(earth materials disintergrate and crumble when expand to moisture)
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what is platy?
horizontally aligned plates
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what is porosity?
total volume of pore space in soil, calculated comparing the bulk capacity of the soil to the individual mineral particle density, varies between 10-70%
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what is a wilting point?
belowthis point plants are unable to extract water from the soil
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what is field capacity?
Field Capacity is the amount of soil moisture or water content held in the soil after excess water has drained away and the rate of downward movement has decreased
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why is air in soil?
influences the availability of many nutrients, air is needed by microrganisms that release plant nutrients to the soil, roots need air to repsire, balance between air and water must be maintained
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where are the nutrients found?
they are found in soil solution, as ions absorbed in the clay particles or to organic matter inside organic molecules and insidethe mineral strucutre
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what are the different types of nutrients in the soil?
macro nutrients(nitrogen, phosphorus, pottasium, sulphur, calcium, magnesium), or micro(iron, maganese, copper, zinc, chloride, boron) non metal=Chloride, metalN, PH, S(negtaivley charged)
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how do nutrients attach onto to clays?
CEC- capacityof the negtaively charged ions to attract positive charged ions(cations), for a certian ph, capacble of holding
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what is isomorphic substituion?
It is the process that substitutes one atom for another in the structure of clay minerals at the time the clay minerals form. This leads to net negative charge in the mineral. Examples are the substitution of Al3+ for Si4+ in the tetrahedra and Mg2+,
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tell me about the nutrients inside organic molecules?
they are not biodegradbale because needs to be digested by microorganisms
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tell me about the nutrients inside the mineral strucutre?
are not biodegradbale because needs to be weakened
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what are the human impacts which damage soil?
contamination, acidifcation, salinisation, compaction, loss of organic matter(conversion to agricuture), erosion
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where is organic matter important?
improves water holding capacity, improves aeration anf supplies the nutrients plants need to grow, binds mineral particles together which reduces erosion
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how can slash and burn have an impact on soils?
rainforests easily recycle nutrients effectively, if we brun ad cut down trees the soil will not get nutrients
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how does desertification affect soil?
sever impacts of erosion, loss of vegetation can lead to a loss of topsoil and deser like conditions
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what is biodiversity?
totality of all genes, species and ecosystems in one location, number of species in one location
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where is terrestial diversity highest?
highest near the equator, due to the warm climate and high primary productivity, not distributed evenly
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where is marine diveristy highest?
western pacific coast where temperature is highest
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what is genetic variation?
differences between organisms caused by their genes(DNA)
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what is a gene?
basic unit by which characteristis are passed from one genreation to the next, different forms of genes are called alleles
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what is evolution?
a change in the genetic material(genotpe) of a population of organisms from one generation to the next, which can change an appearance (phenotype)
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what is genetic drift?
changei the frequency of a gene variant(allele) in a population due to random sampling, it may cause gener variants to disappear completly and hence reduce genetic variation
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whatis natural selection?
charles darwin, process in which individual organims that possess favourabke traits are more likelyto survive and reproduce, concepts of fitness and selection and the fitter ones pass on more genes
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what is antibiotic resistance?
in the large population there are a few resistant individuals, there is storng selection pressure, resistant=survive and reproduce, non resistant-die, major threat
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what is a species?
group of interbreeding natural populations that are reproductively isolated from other groups, difficulty with this
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what is the evolutionary species concept?
an entity composed of organisms that maintains its identiy from other such entities through time and over space,and has its own independent fate and tendancy
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what are examples of physical seperation?
allopatric and peripatric
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what are examples of non physical speeration?
parapatric and sympatric
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what is allopatric seperation?
speicaiton that occurs when bioligical populations of the same species become vacirant or isolated from each other that prevents or interfers with genetic interchange
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what results in allopatric seperation?
population dispersal leading to emigration or by geographical changes such as mountian formation, island formation or large scale human acitivities
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what then happens to the vicariant populations?
undergo genotypic or phenotypic divergence, indepednetly undergo genetic drift and differnt mutations arise in the gene pool, and over time form different characrteristics , if barriers removed my be unsucceesful to mate=different species
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what is adaptive radiation?
organisms diversify rapidly from an ancestral species into a multitude of new forms, particularly when a change in the environment makes new resources available, creates new challenges, or opens new environmental niches.
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what is peripatric seperation?
physical seperation, jump dispersal, isolated island, small populationm genetic drift, adapt to new environment, natural selection, rapid divergence , EVOLUTION- darwin finches
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how is it different to allopatric selection?
it proposes one of the population is a lot smaller
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what is a consequnece of that?
geographically ancestoral peices become paraphyletic(groups of organisms descended from a common evolutionary ancestor but not including all the descendant groups), thereby becoming paraspecies
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what is paraspecies?
gives rise to daughter species without itself becoming extinct
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what is parapatric speciation?
no barrier but an environemtnal graident, unequal geneflow and this evolves differnces
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what is parapathy(parapetric speciation)?
relationship between organisms whose ranges do not significantly overlap but are immediately adjacent to each other, only occuring in a narrow contact zone, may cuase speciation into sister species over time
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what excalty happens in parapatric speciation?
natural barrier, population is ocntinous but dows not mate randomly, individuals are more likely to mate with people closer, reduced genetica variation, distinct selective pressures resulting in unequal gene flow
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what is sypatric speciation?- common in bacertia(same ecological niches)gene transfer)
occuring in same population, no barriers, very rare in animals, , chromosonal changes in plants, no physcial isolation but reproductive isolation
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what is vacariance?
spertion of a group of organisms by a geographic barrier, resulting in diffrentation of the original group to new speicies or varities
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what is an example of vicariance?
CONTINTETNS HAVEMOVED AROUND, massive vicaraince events, simluatenous speciation in multiple taxonomic lines
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another example?
sea level change, this has sperated populations, high degree of endemism(ecological stateof a species being unique to a define geographic location such as an islandor nation)
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another example?
mountain building, in south emrica, the andes form a barrier causing high biodiversity, many examplesofsimilar species on either side of the range,casuing high biodiversity-allopatricseciation
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how havehot spots been related to species?
hot spotisa weak point in the mantle wheremagma is released, volcanic activity leadsto island formation, as the ocean plate passes over the hot spot, an island chain forms-peripatric speciation
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what is redundancy?
no longer needed or useful
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what are species equivalents?
species that perfrom the same function
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whatis functional reduncany?
when itseverlyaffects the biodiversity and species of an area , disrupts chain
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what is biogeography?
is the science that attempts to document and understand satail patterns of biological diversity(from genes to ommunities ad ecosystems)
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what factors affect the distribution of species?
climate, topography, interactions with other species, humans
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what is a biome?
biotic community extending over a large geographical area that presents similar climatic and abiotic conditions such as communities of plants, animals and soil organisms and are often called ecosystems, biome=major ecosystem
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how does climate control biomes?
high temp, water and light at the tripics but also bioclimatic variable control it too, such as evaporation, run off, water surplus and soil moisture
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how does bioclimatic variable seasonlity change over earth?
increases with latitude and distance from sea (continentality)
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What is PAR?
photosynthetically active radiaiton, highest in africa an austrailia and south america, different chlorophyll abosrb different amounts of light at different wavelengghts
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what is the name of the syste, that is a global biocliamtic scheme used for the classification of land areas
holdridge life zones system, triangular diagram looking at each of the latitudal regions, altitudunal belts and how each of the biomes is found in realtion to humidty, percepitation and evapotranspiration
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what is the theory of island biogeography?
kill all the animals on the island, allow island to be recolonized, number of species reaches a predictable equilibrium, this reflects the speices richness of isolated natural communities
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what does species richness of an island depend on?
size and isolation
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what is the theory of insular biogeography?
proposes that the number of species found in an undisturbed insular environment(island) is determined by immigration and extinction. isolated populations may find different evolutionary routes as shown by finches
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in insular biogeography, what is extinction and immigration a result of?
distance of an island from a source of colonists(distance effect), either mainland or other islands
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how is rate of extiction affected by?
island size, species area curve or effect, largerones have greater variety and less likely to become exctict due to the CHANCE EFFECT, habitat heterogenity increase, over time immigration=extinction=equilibrium
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what is the rescue effect?
the principle that the source pop can resuce the island pop from extinction
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what is target effect?
species will target larger islands for their availability of resources, and availbale niches, or by CHANCE
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so if island area increases then what happens?
more variability within area but there is a limit, area increases by 10 then, spcies doubles
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where are the most studied sky islands?
madrean sky, US, numberous mountains form links in a chain, sky islands in the center and north rocky mountains are called island ranges
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why is their high biodiversity in the tropics?
area, age, productivity, climate, dispersal rates, large proprtion of the earths surface, increased climate change
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what is a climate envelope?
range of climatic factors that a species is found in, , these are more static in the tropics, species adapt quicker, range smaller, no need to migrate/disperse, no ice ages here
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what is hadal?
renches(the underworld)
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what is pelagic?
the open sea
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what is abyssal?
the bottom layer
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what is biogeochemistry?
studying how thebiosphere functions and understanding the life support systems of the planet, study of the biologica, geological and chemical processes cycling elemtns through the eqarth system
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what is the carbon cycle?
exchange of carbon between rocks and the earths surface, carbon burial, nutrient recycling, atmpsheric c02, oxygen and climate
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during what era did the carbon cycle affcet the burial of organic/fosilfuel matter and atmospheric composition?
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what is diagenesis?
change of sediments into a different sedimentary rock after formation, at temp and pressures less than that required for the formation of metamophic rocks
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what isthe long term carbon cycle?
c02, photosytheis, burial, organic c in sedimnets, subduction, mantle OR c02, photosytheiss, burail, weathering, metamorphic diageneisis, silicate weathering, caco3 deposition, in sediments, subduction, mantle, volcaism=released
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what is contemporay change carbon cycle?
sun, light energy, auttrohs(release heat) goes to roganic compounds(release heat), heterotrophs which produce ATP, water AND BACK TO AUTROTROPHS, C02 is release by heterotrophs and goes back to autotrophs
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what is the equation for photosysthesis?
c02+water=glucose +oxygen
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how does photosytheiss get to calvin cycle?
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how does calvin cycle get to photosytheiss?
NADP, ADP +Phosphurus
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what are peatlands?
accumulation of partially decayed veg, the c02 they release, they absorb, reaching equilibrium
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what happens to peat over time pressure and heat?
turns to lignite and then coal
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how is petroleum formed?
zoo and phytoplakton and ancient fossilized organic materials got buried under anoxic conditions,mixed with sediment and being buried. When this increasingly happens pressure increases and temp , changed into KEROGEN, foind in oil shales
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what appens after it has been turned into kerogen?
more heat and pressure turns it into gaseous hydrocarbons via a process known as cartagenesis, petroleum is caused fro hydrocarbon pyrolysis in a variety of mainly endothermic reations
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why is burial of organic matter so imporant?
life wouldnt exist as it is today, by burial, c02 is absorbed and oxygen isnt relased
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what is phosphorus neededfor?
nucleic acids, ATP, MEMBRANES
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What is nitrogen used for?
proteins, nucleic acids (DNA)
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whatis magnesium used for?
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what is potassium used for?
osmosis ans trnasport
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what is iron used for?
chlorophyll sytheis, oxygen transport
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whatis calcium used for?
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what is sulphur used for?
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what are the others?
sodium, manganese, boron, copper, zinc etc
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what is nitrogen fixation?
when atmospheric nitrogen is changed into organic nitrogen compoundsby microorganisms
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what is nitrogen mineralisation?
creation of ammonia through bacterial decomposition of nitrogen
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what is nitrification?
Nitrification is the biological oxidation of ammonia or ammonium to nitrite followed by the oxidation of the nitrite to nitrate
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what is denitfrification?
removal of nitogen from air, soil by chemical reduction
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what is eutrophication?
addition of fertilizers, nutients whihc cause algea/phtoplankton to grow, , prevents sunlight reaching other plants, , they die, and abacertia break this matter down leaving places lifeless
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what is leaching?
loss of water soluble plant nutrients from the soil due to rainfall and percolation
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what is haber reaction?
industrial process of artifical nitrgen fixation process to make ammonia
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what are the key types of phosphorus?
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what isthe phosphorus cycle?
rain and weathering cuases roks to relesea phosphrus, this is then disturbted in soils and water, , plants take this up from the soil, whcih may be consumed by animals, , then used for DNA, when animal dies, goes back to soil,
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what is mineralisation in phosphorus cycle?
when organic forms of phosphate are made available by bacteria, that break down inorganic phospahte into organic phosphate
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what happens after mineralisation?
can go in solution in the ocean, in ocean cycling, and stored in sediments
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how is nitrogen similar to phsophrous?
effective recycling within terrestial ecosystems, transport to oceans through rivers, long term burial in sedimnets, human addition through fertilizers
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what are the differences to phosphorus?
no gaseous phase in phosphrus, mian inputs differm biological nitrogen fixation and geological rock weathering
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what percentage of land area is for feeding humans?
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what area of the biomes max had been converted by 1990?
2/3 of the area of two biomes and hald of the others
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what is deforestation?
forests clearance to make space for agriculture, gobally we have lost more than 50%
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what was the gold course near aberdeen called which is oe of the top five remainigng dune habitats in britian and is an SSSI, rekected by local council but imporvoed by the goverment?
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what is the problem with loosing species?-pollinators and keystone
REDUED BIODIVERSITY AND IS LIKE A CYCLE, OTHERSPECIES WILL become extict and affect the whole ecosystem
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what has rising sea levels in cornwall led to?
marine realm, leading to plankton blooms and this is attracting basking sharks which has created ecotoursim
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what species in britian had declined dramatially
because there is no longer sand ells in tradiaiton areas, now eating pipe fish which have low energy
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how can we model extinction rates?
using a climate envelope, whcih is climatic characterists ina specific area, can track extinction heavily dependent on climate, moving when they adjust to climate
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whatis habitat fragmnetation?
emergence of discontinuities in an organism's preferred environment, reduces migration, extinction is more likely
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why does conversion of natural ecosystems to agriculture mean?
loss of biodiversity, and soil carbon, realeases a lot of carbon in the atmpshere whcih contributes to global warming, attemps are bein made to reduce but conversion bodies are highly sceptical
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what is acidifcation?
nitogen oxides dissolv in rainwater as this produces nitric acid which contributes to acid rain
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what is defoliation?
impact of acdiification(loss of leaves)
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how do you calculate nitrogen footprint?
looking at the diet and housing(divide by number of occupants) and travel
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what is gross pimrary productivity?
GPP- the rate at which plants take up c02 and produce carbohydrates through the process of photosythesis
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what is net primary productivity?
NPP- rate at which plants in an ecosystem produce biomass, equal to the differnce between GPP and autotrophic respiration(intake input/output)
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what is autotrophic respiration?
rate at which carbon is returned to the atmpshere as c02 during plant metambolism
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what is heterotrophic respiration?
release of co2 during the decomposition of organic matter in the soil by soi animals, fungi and other decomposer organisms
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what is an autotroph?
organism that can produce organic matter from simple substrates present in its surroundings, using another energy source eg light in the case of plants
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what is a heterotroph?
an organism that cannot fix its own carbon and therefore has to consume organic matter for its growth
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how do you work out NPP
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what is total system respiration(rtotal)?
Ra(respiration)+Rh(heterotrophic repsiration)
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how do you work out net ecosystem productivity (NEP)?
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How do you work out net biome productivity?
GPP-Rtotal- disturbance
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how do you measure biomass?
tree diameter at breast height, use equations to measure total above ground biomass and total below biomass, , DIMATER BREAST HEIGHT IS A COMMON DENDROMETRIC MEASUREMNET
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what is the harvest method?
use of litter bags to collect all litter produced overa certian period of time, it is good for long term measuremnet of little production and is unexpensive but it neglects root little production and there is uncertainity in upscaling
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how to work out respiration (rtotal) in the dark?
chamber methods, infra red gas analyzer, measurement of net ecosystem productivity(NEP)., adv-good for seperating different fluxes and it detailed but it is expensive and issues of upscaling
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whatmeasures c02?
eddy covariance infra red analyzer, automated, day and night, measures NEP and Rtotal, works in flat terrain, any vegetation and is non intrusive but good for upscalin, doesnt do well on slopes or still conditions, gap filing is necessary and expensi
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what measures wind speeds?
sonic anemometer
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what is flask sampling?
networks record c02, methane, to identigity long term trends, seasonal variability and spatial distrubtuoon of gases
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what is remote sensing?
physical data of an object without touch or contact or the observation of a target by a device by a device some distance away, ,all objects absorb, reflect and transmit differetn wavelenghts of energy called electromagnetic radiaiton, remote sensors
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what else can remote sensors do?
analyses Em energy, detect live plant biomass based on the wavelegths relfected and absorbedand can calcualte biomass of different plants based on difference between reflectance of visible and infrared radiaiton
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what is the NDVI?
Normalized difference vegetation index-indicator that can be used to analyse remote sending typically from a space platform
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what are the uses of the NDVI?
Detects changes in plant biomass, deterimes type of land cover, quantify rates of land use changes and deforetation, looks at impacts of large scale disturbances, measures frequency of fires
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free air carbon dixoide enrichment measures c02 in forests, we know trees resond postively to c02
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wha is ITEX?
International tunra experiment used perspex chambers and passive warming which showed onincrease temperatire inside by 1-2 degrees, impacts of warming on tundra systems
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what is the living planet index?
measurs the worlds biodiversity by measureing populations, not that sucessful
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where are biggest threats forbiodiversity projected?
south east asia
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what was the name of the treaty that was signed by 150 goverment leaders at the RIO earth summit?
Convention on biological diversity
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Other cards in this set

Card 2


who first used the term biosphere?


edward suess

Card 3


what order does the atmopshere go up?


Preview of the front of card 3

Card 4


what is found in the stratosphere?


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Card 5


how do we know how far to measure the biosphere to?


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