I hehumanpopulationof the world was about 6 billion ini396, three times its size in1900.Duringthisperiodof rapidwannanopulation growth,populationsof many otherspeciesrntedecreased dramatically. Will the humanpopulationtnntinue togrow?Willpopulationsof other speciescontinueM'getsmaller? Will other species continue to becomeextinct?An understanding ofpopulat[onsrs crucial to answeringMesequestions.
tlopulationisagroupof organisms that belongto the samemrciesandlivein aparticularplaceat the same ime. Allof the bassftnmg n apondduring a certainperiodof time constituteapopula-M;n because hey are isolated in thepondanddonotinteract withunss ivinginotherponds.Theboundaries of apopulationmaybemnrFosedy afeatureof the environment, such as a lake shore,orfltury-can e arbitrarily chosen to simplify a study of thepopulation.ihepropertiesofpopulationsdiffer from thoseofindividuals.-*m.ndividualmay be born, it may reproduce,orit maydie. Apop-ntnrionstudyfocuseson apopulationasa whole-how many indi-mrfird]sare born, how many die, and so on.
.+*;ropulation'sizeisthenumberofindividuals itcontains. Size s a,mmdamentalndimportantpopulation property,but it can be diffi-iflnrifomeasuredirectly.Ifapopulationissmall and composedru"""""""":nmobileorganisms, suchasplants,itssize can be determinedmp[v by countingindividuals. Moreoften, though, individuals arero,r abundant, too widespread, or toomobileto be easily counted,;nnrdrcientists must estimate the number of individuals inthepopu-jryBffr-Suppose that a scientistwants to lcrow howmany oak treeslilrwena10 km2patchofforest. Insteadof searching the entirepatchenrmr-ounting all the oak trees,the scientist couldcount the treesin,um.aller section of theforest, such as aI kmzarea, and use this
Describehe hreemainatternsofpopulationispersion.IExplainhemportancefapopulation'sge tructure.
Contrasthe hreemainypesof survivorshipurves.