apes ch3 vocab


the smallest and most fundamental structural and functional units of life

cell theory

the idea that all living things are composed of cells. most widely accepted scientific theory in bio

eukaryotic cell

surrounded by a membrane and has distinct nucleus and several other internal parts called organelles, which are surrounded by membranes.

prokaryotic cell

surrounded by a membrane, but it has no distinct nucleus and no other internal parts surrounded by membranes.


a set of individuals that can mate and produce fertile offspring.


the study of how organisms interact with their living env of other organisms and with their nonliving env of soil, water, other forms of matter, and energy mostly from the sun.


A group of individuals of the same species that live in the same place at the same time

genetic diversity

variation in a population


The place were a population or an individual organisms normally lives

Community or biological community

consist of all the populations of different species that live in a particular place


A community of different species interacting with one another and with their nonliving environment of soil water other forms of matter and energy mostly from the sun


consist of the parts of the earth air water and soil where life is found


A thin spherical envelope of gases surrounding the earth surface


inner layer. Extenze only about 17 km above sea level at the tropics an about 7 km above the earth north and south poles

greenhouse gases

The remaining 1% of the air includes water vapor carbon dioxide and methane. They trap heat and thus warm the lower atmosphere


next layer. stretches 17 through 50 km above the earth surface. it's lower portion contains enough O-Zone gas to filter out most of the suns harmful ultraviolet radiation


consist of all of the water on or near the earths surface


consist of the earths intensely hard-core, a thick mantle composed mostly of rock and a thin outer crust


large regions such as forest deserts and grasslands with distinct climates and certain species adapted to them

aquatic life zones

scientist divide the watery parts of the biosphere into aquatic life zones, each containing numerous ecosystems

natural greenhouse effect

The vibrating gaseous molecules then have higher kinetic energy, which helps to warm the lower atmosphere and the earths surface. Without this natural greenhouse effect, the earth would be to cold to support the forms of life we find here today


consist of nonliving components such as water air nutrients rocks heat and solar energy


consist of living and once living biological components plants animals and microbes

range of tolerance

each population in an ecosystem has a range of tolerance to variations in its physical and chemical environment

limiting factors

sometimes one or more factors, known as limiting factors, are more important in regulating population growth and other factors are

limiting factor principle

too much or too little of any abiotic factor can limit or prevent growth of a population, even if all other factors are at or near the optimal range of tolerance

trophic level

ecologist assign every organism in an ecosystem to a feeding level or trophic level, depending on its source of food or nutrients

Producers (autotrophs)

make the nutrients they need from compounds and energy obtained from their environment


most producers capture sunlight to produce energy rich carbohydrates by photosynthesis, which is the way energy enters most ecosystems


A few producers, mostly specialized bacteria, can convert simple inorganic compounds from their environment into more complex nutrient compounds without using sunlight, through a process called chemosynthesis

Consumers (heterotrophs)

all other organisms in an ecosystem that cannot produce the nutrients they need through photosynthesis or other processes and must obtain their nutrients by feeding on other organisms or their remains

primary consumers(herbivores)

plant eaters. animals such as rabbits grasshoppers deer and zooplankton that eat producers mostly by feeding on green plants

secondary consumers(carnivores)

meat eaters. animals such as spiders hyenas birds frogs and some zooplankton eating fish, all of which feed on the flesh of herbivores

third and higher level consumers

carnivores such as tigers wolves mice eating snakes hocks and killer whales that feed on the flesh of other carnivores


animals such as pigs foxes cock roaches and humans. Play do a dual roll by feeding on both plants and animals


primarily certain types of bacteria and fungi, are consumers that release nutrients from the dead bodies of plants and animals and return them to the soil, water, and air for reuse by producers

detritus feeders(detritivores)

Feed on the waste or dead bodies of other organisms called detritus

Aerobic respiration

uses oxygen to convert glucose back into carbon dioxide and water

anaerobic respiration(fermentation)

instead of carbon dioxide and water, the end products of this process are compounds such as methane gas, ethyl alcohol, acetic acid, etc

Food chain

A sequence of organisms, each of which serves as a source of food or energy for the next

Food web

organisms in most ecosystems form a complex network of interconnected food chains


The dry weight of all organic matter contained in its organisms

Ecological efficiency

The percentage of usable chemical energy transferred as biomass from one trophic level to the next

pyramid of energy flow

illustrates the energy lost for a simple food chain, assuming a 90% energy loss with each transfer

Gross primary productivity

The rate at which an ecosystem's producers convert solar energy into chemical energy as biomass found in their tissues

net primary productivity

The rate at which producers use photosynthesis to produce and stored chemical energy minus the rate at which they use some of this stored chemical energy through aerobic respiration

bio geochemical cycles or nutrient cycles

The elements and compounds that make up nutrients move continuously through air, water, soil, rock, and the living organisms in ecosystems and in the biosphere in cycles

Hydro logic cycle or water cycle

collects, purifies, and distributes the earths fixed supply of water


overland, about 90% of the water that reaches the atmosphere evaporates from the surfaces of plants

Carbon cycle

where carbon circulates through the biosphere, the atmosphere, and parts of the hydrosphere

Nitrogen cycle

The other takes place in aquatic systems, soil, and the root of some plans, we're specialized bacteria, called nitrogen fixing bacteria, complete this conversion as a part of the nitrogen cycle

Phosphorus cycle

phosphorus circulates through water, the earths crust, and living organisms in the phosphorus cycle

Sulfur cycle

Sulfur circulatesthrough the biosphere in the sulfur cycle